Dowell, MD – A well-traveled path in Southern Calvert County is about to get a makeover. The start of the project has been many years in the works. In fact the history of an improved Dowell Road goes back at least 20 years.

Calvert County Department of Public Works Director Rai Sharma recalled the time his predecessor Terry Carlson told him “if you can do this road you’ll be the hero of Calvert County.” Noting that two decades have elapsed since there was serious discussion about widening the road began, Sharma quipped, “government moves slow but not that slow.”

On Aug. 19 the Calvert County Commissioners voted unanimously to award a $4.8 million contract to Great Mills Trading Post Company Inc. for phase one of construction of Dowell Road widening improvements.

Commissioner Gerald W. “Jerry” Clark [R], who has been an advocate for the project in the dozen years he has served on the board, spoke at the Sept. 9 ground-breaking ceremony. Clark explained the widened road would include a middle turn lane, sidewalks and a bike path.

“This is a special place, it’s a very important road,” said Clark, who noted in addition to Solomons Town Center Park and Annmarie Sculpture Garden and Arts Center, an assistant living facility/nursing home (Hermitage at St. John’s Creek), a few businesses (including Calvert Marina), homes and access points to some relatively new subdivisions are located on the road.

Some of the annual events at Annmarie Garden—such as the annual Halloween celebration—have posed challenges on Dowell Road. Clark said the project will help ease the congestion during those events.

“It’s going to be a first-class road,” said Clark.

The project will be done in three phases. The first phase will cover Dowell Road’s intersection with Route 765 (H.G. Trueman Road) to the Apple Lane intersection. The second phase will go from Apple Lane to one of the businesses, a country store. The final phase will begin at the country store and proceed to the end of the road.

Sharma said there are still right-of-way easements that need to be acquired for the second phase. Phase one is expected to be completed by this coming February.

In addition to all five county commissioners, Delegate Tony O’Donnell and former Maryland comptroller and county commissioner Bobby Swann attended and participated in the golden shovel ceremony.

Contact Marty Madden at