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Cincinnati Streetcar / Cincinnati Bell Connector News

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LMAO!!!

 

I might be able to understand where he is getting his other complaints, but I don't see where creating a panel to plan the Banks would draw fire.

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Why would you want a committee to oversee the largest/most important development project in your city's history??  I just really hate the fact that the Enquirer even took up the space on the page for a person who clearly doesn't even know what they're talking about...

 

-they didn't create a planning commission...its a 'working group'

-businesses aren't scrambling to leave OTR....some are leaving and then being replaced by other businesses (just like any other business environment).

-then to criticize public art/community gateway is not only ignorant but shows how little class he has

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Mr. Galt shows that people really do live in a vacuum, as if the world outside their own little version of it doesn't exist. If he acknowledged its existence, his misperceptions would be shattered and would cause him to admit the most awful thing he's ever had to acknowledge .... that he's wrong.


"Most of us have been conditioned to regard military combat as exciting and glamorous -- an opportunity for men to prove their competence and courage. Since armies are legal, we feel that war is acceptable; in general, nobody feels that that war is criminal or that accepting it is a criminal attitude. In fact, we have been brainwashed. War is neither glamorous nor attractive. It is monstrous. Its very nature is one of tragedy and suffering" --Dalai Lama

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I spoke to Vice Mayor Tarbell and asked him if we would have streetcars in three years and he said probably sooner.  Gotta like the optimism.

 

That is exciting!  I hope something doesn't ruin it. 

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One is American, the other more European. And both of them are light rail.

 

Most Americans think of trams in terms of aerial trams. I suspect "streetcar" tests better here, and that's why the industry uses it.

 

If you're focused on Cincinnati, I'd start calling it the Cincinnati Streetcar.

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This is very exciting for Cincinnati, it will help with traffic flow and create a more downtown atmosphere. Would there also be light rail going to the suburbs especially the eastside of town, where its more harder to reach downtown, without having to travel to either 71 or 471 to get to downtown.

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Portland will soon open an aerial tram between its "Banks" project known as The South Waterfront and its "Pill Hill" campus, the Oregon Health Sciences University. It's really a beautiful piece of construction, way over budget and behind schedule, but beautiful nevertheless.

 

This area of Portland will be a laboratory for transportation choices over the next ten years with the aerial tram, the Portland Streetcar and the extension of light rail through downtown Portland to the south.

 

Here's the story in today's Oregonian: http://www.oregonlive.com/business/oregonian/index.ssf?/base/business/1168998972144500.xml&coll=7

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Editorial

 

Streetcars: Is the desire there?

 

Should Cincinnati travel "back to the future" by reviving streetcars in the city's core? Could a modest, three-mile downtown loop spur genuine economic development, help relieve traffic congestion and lead us toward a comprehensive regional transit system? Is this politically and economically feasible?

 

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070121/EDIT01/701210302/1090

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Well, I took John Schneider's advice and wrote my 100 word letter to the Enquirer.  To my surpise, it was published today.

 

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070121/EDIT0202/701210303/1022/EDIT01

 

Make Cincinnati a real 'destination' location

 

I commend Cincinnati City Councilman Chris Bortz for promoting the development of streetcars in the city ("City studies streetcar system," Jan. 17). Modern streetcar systems have spurred incredible amounts of development in cities such as Portland, and I have no doubt that they would do same here.

 

The public needs to understand that this is a feasible project (financially and otherwise) that can increase the vibrancy of our urban core, link together vital areas in our region (downtown, uptown, NKY), and turn Cincinnati into more of a destination location.

 

Adam Weeks

Downtown

 

Instead of streetcar 'study,' modify buses

 

Not only is the idea of a streetcar to Over-the-Rhine, etc., overly optimistic, the way the city is investigating this idea shows quite clearly what is wrong with this city. They spend $160,000 on a study.

 

Instead, take a bus, modify it for step on/step off, no-seat, streetcar-type layout and just drive the streetcar back and forth for six months, then evaluate. Even make it free to encourage its use if you want. This way there is no need to give up street space, no need to spend massive sums, no need to wait years.

 

This kind of test might cost $200,000 but it would get much better results as to whether this concept is even warranted in some way. Check out Denver for an example of what I'm talking about. No track required.

 

If it turns out we need this type of thing, fine, I'm wrong. This wouldn't be the first time. However, if I'm right we only spent a little money finding out.

 

In my opinion the downtown streets are far too narrow to give up precious space to streetcars that will run around mostly empty anyway.

 

John Whitling

Northside

 

 

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In my opinion the downtown streets are far too narrow to give up precious space to streetcars that will run around mostly empty anyway.

 

John Whitling

Northside

 

 

 

Well, that's one view. Here's another: streetcars cause less street congestion than buses do.

 

For one thing, they're only eight feet wide. And most important, modern streetcars have twice the quantity and many times the quality of the two doors buses have. They have four doors -- two on each side -- which enables them to dock on either side of the street, something buses can't do. And the doors are very, very wide with no barriers -- so boarding and de-boarding is much faster than a bus. People in wheelchairs and scooters can board in seconds rather than the five or so minutes it takes to board a disabled passenger on most of our buses. And because the ride is so smooth, the passenger doesn't have to be strapped-in, which distracts the driver and is kind of humiliating for the disabled passenger.

 

Anywhere you can run a bus, you can run a streetcar with less effect on traffic. Remember that when someone else brings this up again, as will surely happen sometime this week when you're at work.

 

People like Mr. Whitling are so uninformed on this issue -- that's why we take them to Portland. I've had a hundred or more John Whitlings out there. They go as skeptics and return as converts, even zealous converts sometimes.

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With regards to using the L&N for light rail or streetcars, it is most certainly able to carry either.  Both, and streetcars especially are much lighter weight than the freight trains that traveled over the bridge for over 100 years.  What's really interesting about using the L&N is that the center pedestrian walk used to in fact carry streetcars, and so in addition to the freight rail side there is space for two tracks without heavily modifying the bridge (although the approaches would certainly require some work).

 

This is the redundant center walkway, which could carry a Newport-bound track, with the currently unused freight side carrying the Cincinnati-bound track. 

ln43.jpg

 

Here is an old image of the bridge, when a dedicated streetcar track ran on the outside of the superstructure.  You can still see signs of this on the bridge today.

ln-card2.jpg

 

Meanwhile there is plenty of room on the lightly-used Taylor-Southgate Bridge for streetcars although the L&N is the more interesting bridge which is why I'm rooting for it. 

ztaylor9.jpg

 

 

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I spoke with Berding and Bortz at the neighborhood summit 2007 about the streetcar.  their estimates are 2+ years (Berding) and 2 years (bortz). 

 

Apparently John Cranley was anti-streetcar until he went to portland and now is really in favor of the project. 

 

This makes Berding, Bortz, Tarbell, Cranley strong yes on the streetcar. 

 

The mayor is also pro streetcar and will not veto, so if either Thomas, Crowelly, Monzel, Cole or Ghiz are on board, and probably most of them are, then we have the votes.

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Let's play a game.  Assume you have your druthers and you have 16 miles of two way streetcar track to lay in the city of cincinnati.  Let's further assume that (maybe impossibly) inclines that metro busses can make their way up in incliment weather can also handle streetcars.  For a listing of such hills go to metro's website.  Where would your routes go? 

 

 

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My routes would be a north south line from downtown to the zoo hitting OTR and Corryville; a east west line from northisde to gaslight to UC med campus to DeSalles to Obryonville to Hyde park square and a final line connecting Union terminal (hopefully the seat of the Ohio Hub Rail service) city west CBD and Mt. Adams

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My routes would be a north south line from downtown to the zoo hitting OTR and Corryville; a east west line from northisde to gaslight to UC med campus to DeSalles to Obryonville to Hyde park square and a final line connecting Union terminal (hopefully the seat of the Ohio Hub Rail service) city west CBD and Mt. Adams

 

Your western line is very intriging to me.  It has been brought up by some that it would be nice to connect to the Museum Center, but that the center could not support a line on its own.  However, making stops in City West and tying in with the potential Ohio Hub Line would make this line doable.  Union Terminal would be a nice area for the Ohio Hub Line to come in, and that combined with a streetcar line could really help to reinvigorate the West End which is alread on its way!

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I see streetcars running on the Oasis Line along Eastern Avenue between downtown and Lunken Airport. This woud obviate the need, such as it is, for putting diesel trains on that ROW. I think you would run a spur off that line to Newport and from there to Covington. Wally Pagan, the executive director of Southbank Partners, told me the other day that Northern Kentucky will have streetcars before Cincinnati does.

 

It's not an idle boast. I've taken many Northern Kentucky leaders to Portland over the last five years, and they are way ahead in their understanding of streetcars compared to elected officials in Cincinnati. They have been quietly planning, arranging for ROW, and talking to the folks in Frankfort a lot about their plans. Don't be surprised if you wake up some morning and see an above-the-fold headline in the Enquirer that they're ready to start laying track.

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Some of the first letters to the Cincinnati Enquirer re: their on-line invitaion to start a discussion on the proposed streetcar line:

 

Leap forward on transit

 

 

Community conversation

 

I'd like to think that our local officials will hop on board the streetcar concept. Cincinnati needs to leap forward and consider this openmindedly. Let's create more opportunities for important corridors for key neighborhoods within the city. I'm lining up volunteers to build the West Side spur running out West Eighth Street and up Glenway Avenue.

 

Peter Witte, West Price Hill

 

Take a look back

 

I can't stand it. Now the back- to-the-future city of Cincinnati is going to spend $160,000 on a streetcar study instead of putting two or three more police officers on downtown beats. Well, here is free advice from someone who has been there and done that.

 

The proponents' theory is that other people will put their own money to develop real estate and businesses along a streetcar line because it is "permanent" and can't be easily changed. What they forget or never knew is how easy it is to blacktop over the tracks for a smooth street like the city did wholesale in the 1950s? And what a relief! No more auto flat tires or wheels out of alignment. No more autos spinning or swerving out of control when trying to pull out of rail ruts or sliding on slick rails. No more denial of access to the handicapped or pedestrian injuries and deaths from riders entering or leaving a streetcar or safety island 10 feet from a curb in all kinds of weather. No more autos running into safety islands. No more traffic backups for blocks when a streetcar has an accident or breaks down and other streetcars and autos cannot get around the bottleneck; no more auto traffic jams and pollution because autos can't physically or legally go around stopped or slow moving streetcars.

 

Face it. In the real world, you can't entice people out of their autos and into a humongously expensive and dangerous streetcar system (or a cheap and safe bus system, for that matter) if you run the cars or buses only hourly or on the half hour. Although trolley buses might eliminate many of the problems and limitations of streetcars, buses can do so now, instantly.

 

Milton H. Bortz, Sharonville

 

We need a vision

 

Regarding the proposed streetcar system: It's so sad; the potential of this wonderful city is brushed aside time and time again. I, like many others, have all but given up on the effectiveness of City Council to enact a vision that revitalizes our downtown, bringing business back and restoring our pride in Cincinnati. The people rejected light rail a few years ago, and since then gas has gone through the roof, downtown has gotten worse, and commuting has gotten longer and longer. Give us a rail system, bring back the Mount Adams incline and build the Banks! Some of these projects have been in the works for almost 100 years (we have the tunnels to prove it).

 

Jake Huber, Dayton, Ky.

 

Look at other cities

 

If the writer of the letter "Streetcar notion just a feel-good idea" (Jan. 18) is right, I would feel good about living in a city with efficient and dependable transit. Apparently, other cities feel good about the increase in economic activity that frequently follows investment in light rail, which is why St. Louis, Denver, Salt Lake City and Dallas all have invested in light rail in the last decade. In Portland, Ore., $3.8 billion has been invested in new real estate projects within walking distance of a light rail station.

 

It sure would feel good to see that kind of development in our own city.

 

Robert Pickard, Fairview

 

Courage, please

 

There's promise of a bright new day for Cincinnati with news of the planning in process for a streetcar system around downtown and uptown, with the discussions among city and county leaders for a regional transportation system, and the negotiations among city, Hamilton and surrounding counties on a way to deal with those who break the law. We have been waiting for this for years. May our leaders have the courage, skill and vision to stay in the discussion until the goals are achieved and our region thrives together, rather than having winners and losers through competition.

 

Carren Herring, Kennedy Heights

 

 

Sound off

Sunday, we launched a discussion about whether Cincinnati should invest in a streetcar system, as proposed by city officials last week. Here are a few of the many responses we've received. To add your voice, e-mail us at letters@enquirer.com. Or, go to our online discussion board at Enquirer.Com (click on the Opinion tab); or, go to Cincinnati.Com. Keyword: streetcar.

 

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070123/EDIT0202/701230320/1022/EDIT

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Here is what I wrote on the Enquirer's comment page:

 

When someone thinks of a successful city some of the places that come to mind are: NYC, Paris, Chicago, San Francisco, London...What is a common link here? They all have very efficient and functioning transit systems. Development around transit lines are evident today as they were 80 years ago in New York. Whether it will encourage more affordable housing is debateable, but whether the amount of development will increase is not! As a 'young professional' and a part of the 'creative class' I look at this as Cincy's chance to help retain the young talent it is training at UC and the other institutions around. I know I would LOVE to stay here, but I may be drawn by the likes of Portland, Seattle, or one of the other many cities taking the neccessary steps towards a vibrant city.

 

http://frontier.cincinnati.com/comments/threadView.asp?page=3&threadid=177

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Nice of the Enquirer to publish such a crappy picture. Let's see, what do we have here? A broken down old-style trolley being passed by a "modern" bus. Kind of plays into the misinformation in Milton Bortz's letter above, doesn't it?

 

I sent them a picture of the Portland Streetcar. Let's see if they use it the next time.

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Funny, when I was in SF last, I was intent on seeing that very same Cincinnati replica PCC that runs on the F line -- I was on the lookout for car 1057. Despite being in the vicintity for several days, and doing some touristy stuff along the route, I didn't see it. That is, until I was heading into the BART station to go to the airport. I caught the yellow car in the corner of my eye. I shouted excitedly, "there it is!", checked to see that it was 1057, and yanked my camera from my bag and snapped off a few blurry pics. People looked at me like I was a complete nerd.

 

And you know what? They were right.

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Nice of the Enquirer to publish such a crappy picture. Let's see, what do we have here? A broken down old-style trolley being passed by a "modern" bus. Kind of plays into the misinformation in Milton Bortz's letter above, doesn't it?

 

I sent them a picture of the Portland Streetcar. Let's see if they use it the next time.

 

I was thinking the same thing before I read your comment. The Enquirer is full of idiots. The sad thing is, this picture will affect people in a negative way. :-/

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Funny, when I was in SF last, I was intent on seeing that very same Cincinnati replica PCC that runs on the F line -- I was on the lookout for car 1057. Despite being in the vicintity for several days, and doing some touristy stuff along the route, I didn't see it. That is, until I was heading into the BART station to go to the airport. I caught the yellow car in the corner of my eye. I shouted excitedly, "there it is!", checked to see that it was 1057, and yanked my camera from my bag and snapped off a few blurry pics. People looked at me like I was a complete nerd.

 

And you know what? They were right.

 

I saw the Cincinnati car when I was in SF two years ago.  I wasn't even aware of its existence, I just happened to be standing on a corner when it stopped right in front of me.

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Well..here is some news from the 1/24/07 City Council Minutes:

 

APPOINTMENT, dated 1/10/2007, submitted by Mayor Mallory, recommending the appointment of Mr. John Schneider to the Cincinnati Planning Commission. Mr. Schneider is a founding member of Downtown Cincinnati, Inc., and currently chairs the Alliance for Regional Transit. Mr. Schneider will serve a 5-year term, which will expire on January 31, 2012.

 

Congratulations John!!!!

:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

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Congratulations John!!!!

:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

 

Thanks. I told Mayor Mallory that there are plenty of people in this city pitching wider roads and bigger parking lots. I said I want to stick up for the pedestrian and walkable communities where people can fulfill more of their needs closer to home. I left the interview with certainty that he's going to make good city planning a priority around here again.

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Congratulations John!!!!

:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

 

Thanks. I told Mayor Mallory that there are plenty of people in this city pitching wider roads and bigger parking lots. I said I want to stick up for the pedestrian and walkable communities where people can fulfill more of their needs closer to home. I left the interview with certainty that he's going to make good city planning a priority around here again.

 

Huge congratulations!!!


"You don't just walk into a bar and mix it up by calling a girl fat" - buildingcincinnati speaking about new forumers

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