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I've been following this process for a long time and I am quite excited about these plans and the mostly supportive comments we're seeing here.

Some of you question whether "have they thought about...X" and I can say that these plans reflect a lot of very good planning and expert thoughtful analysis. A lot of the studies and reports are available on the DDOT site.

This is why streetcars are better than busses:
--A streetcar can carry something like two or three times as many people per vehicle. You can't just keep adding buses to a line -- traffic just gets more and more congested. Streetcars reduce traffic very very considerably.
--As others have mentioned, the system will be more efficient per passenger, and it runs on already heavily trafficked corridors (i.e. it won't be a white elephant).
--More people will use streetcars than buses because they are more comfortable and have a cleaner image.
--Streetcars are extremely CHEAP and easy to build relative to more Metro stations/lines. Just the Dulles line is going to cost as much as the entire streetcar system, and will no doubt bring more benefits to DC proper.
--The streetcar grid COMPLEMENTS Metro. We're compounding return on investment for all public transportation.

Metronic asks whether there has been "any real cost-benefit analysis on this." Uhm, yes. By the way, construction of streetcar tracks can be done as fast as one block every two weeks. Hardly a major disruption given the benefits.

I was told that the whole system could (in theory if funding comes through) be completed in 7-10 years. Compare that to the 30/40 years the Metro system has taken (at a very small fraction of the cost). No doubt there were opponents to Metro as well, but now, seriously, how many people in DC wish Metro had never been built?

by Dude on Oct 23, 2009 2:14 pm • linkreport

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