Nicollet-Central Streetcar

Roads - Rails - Sidewalks - Bikeways
Posts: 95
Joined: June 1st, 2012, 7:44 pm

Re: Nicollet-Central Streetcar

Postby minntransplant » February 20th, 2018, 12:47 pm

talindsay wrote:
February 20th, 2018, 12:41 pm
nordeast homer wrote:
February 19th, 2018, 12:50 pm
Isn't the "beauty" of a streetcar system that you don't have to do as much prep for laying rails. The cars are much lighter than LRT and there should not be the need to move any underground utilities. They should be able to do the line in considerably less time than an LRT line with less disruption to the rest of the road.
While that's traditionally been true, my understanding is that most US streetcar systems are built with about the same specs as light rail, since that allows more flexibility in vehicle selection. I've sort of assumed all along that any "streetcar" we get will probably just be using single Siemens S70s as their vehicles, since that offers more operational flexibility.

Everybody likes the little streetcars they use in Portland, but they violate Buy America, and they've apparently been hard to get parts, bad production timelines, etc. Streetcars require so few vehicles, and there's so few streetcar systems in the US, that there's not much compliant rolling stock available here, so it's cheaper, easier, and a safer decision to just use single LRVs.
Tucson also used the same streetcars as Portland for its tiny streetcar line. There were delays in streetcar production that delayed the line opening.

Stone Arch Bridge
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Re: Nicollet-Central Streetcar

Postby mattaudio » February 20th, 2018, 1:20 pm

Of course another funding stream is the new (or at least agreed upon) 20 year Parks and Streets tax increase, producing $800 million over the next 20 years. If we took even 10% of that for urban transit improvements in Minneapolis and offered it as a 50% match for any county and/or state dollars for BRT in Minneapolis, we could leverage that $80 million into nearly the entire Minneapolis aBRT network.

nordeast homer
US Bank Plaza
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Re: Nicollet-Central Streetcar

Postby nordeast homer » February 20th, 2018, 2:53 pm

That's really interesting. I was basing my information on meetings way back when Hiawatha was just being built; several of our city and regional leaders had gone to Portland and possibly Denver to study regional transportation. One of the highlights that they were touting was streetcars -vs- LRT and how much more cost effective and less disruptive the streetcars would be to build out.
If the streetcars are shorter and virtually the same weight it would seem that there may actually be more track bed prep work and you would definitely need to move utilities.

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