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Light Rail Tracks west of Fitzsimons Station (R Line)
Purple Line will open 4½ years late and cost $1.4 billion more to complete, state says

Maryland’s Purple Line would begin carrying passengers in the Washington suburbs in fall 2026 — 4½ years behind schedule — and cost an additional $1.4 billion to build under a proposed contract to complete the beleaguered light-rail project, state transportation officials said Wednesday. The longer-term financial implications would be steeper. The state’s cost of a broader agreement for a private concessionaire to build, operate and maintain the line for several decades would climb from $5.6 billion to $9.3 billion.

Two Anne Arundel power plants announce plans to transition from coal to oil, get green light from Maryland Public Service Commission

Two Anne Arundel County power plants — Brandon Shores and H.A. Wagner — have announced their plans to transition from burning coal to mostly burning oil in the years ahead, and they received a preliminary green light from the Maryland Public Service Commission on Wednesday. Environmental advocates say the plans to abandon coal-burning are commendable, but that they’re concerned by the plants’ proposed switch to burning oil, also a highly polluting fossil fuel.

Read More: Baltimore Sun
National Aquarium Will Require Guests To Prove They’re Vaccinated
Planning on taking a trip to the National Aquarium soon? Don’t forget to bring your COVID-19 vaccine card. Starting on Jan. 25, all guests age 12 and older will be required to provide proof that they’re fully vaccinated before they’re allowed into the National Aquarium. The policy change is part of the aquarium’s effort to protect guests, staff, volunteers and animals from COVID-19 as infections and hospitalizations soar in Maryland.
Read More: WJZ
Cordish bringing Spark Flex coworking space to Inner Harbor 

The Cordish Companies on Wednesday unveiled plans for a major expansion of its coworking brand, Spark Flex. Based on the success of Spark Baltimore, which is 100% occupied, Spark Flex will launch this spring in the Pier IV office building in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. The Spark Flex expansion of Spark coworking is a continuation of Cordish’s investment in downtown Baltimore and its focus to support innovative workspace solutions for dynamic, growing organizations.

Under Armour’s CEO shares top goal, personal background in first LinkedIn post

Patrik Frisk served in the Swedish Army and as a peacekeeping soldier for the United Nations. His goal at Under Armour is to grow the sportswear maker’s revenue so it has an even 50-50 split between its North American and international businesses. Those are just a couple of the details Frisk revealed in his first post on LinkedIn after recently joining the business-focused social media platform. Frisk has largely remained a man of mystery since succeeding founder Kevin Plank as CEO of Baltimore-based Under Armour in 2020.

How worker shortages impact Eastern Shore manufacturing

For several years, Salisbury manufacturer Toroid has experienced difficulties in hiring new workers. However, since the coronavirus pandemic began, those challenges have only magnified, according to Romona Fontaine, vice president of operations. This problem isn’t unique to Toroid: A worker shortage has swept the nation.

Read More: Delmarva Now
M&T Bank designates 17 Baltimore-area branches multicultural banking centers

M&T Bank is transforming 17 Baltimore-area branches into a new multicultural banking center format in a bid to expand services in racially and ethnically diverse communities. The bank also will invest in a “community empowerment center” in West Baltimore, where it will offer ATM, account opening, lending, mortgage and other banking services, the bank announced Thursday.

Read More: Baltimore Sun
Shelves Empty At Maryland Grocery Stores Again, Omicron & Winter Weather To Blame

Maryland’s grocery stores are struggling to keep products on their shelves as well as workers amid the surge in Omicron and ongoing supply chain issues. The winter weather blunder has also played a role in the stripped selection of food and other products usually in abundance at local grocery stores. The variant is the cause of a food supply chain shortage in the Baltimore area, according to Ravi Srinivasan, an associate professor with Loyola University Maryland.

Read More: WJZ
Baltimore to collect recycling every other week as COVID causes major staff shortages

Baltimore will scale back recycling collection to every other week due to massive staffing shortages during the coronavirus pandemic, city officials announced Wednesday. The move, which takes effect next Tuesday, comes amid a combination of increased trash following the holiday season and a pandemic-driven shortage of workers that has left the city, at times, with as little as half of its staff on the job.

Read More: Baltimore Sun
Bank of America slashes fees for account overdrafts

Bank of America is slashing the amount it charges customers when they spend more than they have in their accounts and plans to eliminate entirely its fees for bounced checks. It’s the latest move by the nation’s biggest banks to roll back the overdraft fees they long charged customers, fees that often amount to hundreds of dollars a year for frequent overdraft users.

Read More: Baltimore Sun

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