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Cincinnati Streetcar / Cincinnati Bell Connector News

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I would think that it would make more sense to increase the number of cars running and thus decrease the time until the next streetcar arrives if more capacity is needed.  That would be a very good problem to have though because it would mean a lot of people are riding.

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Hello all, I had some more musings on the uptown streetcar possibilities, but I realize that in itself doesn’t really count as “Cincinnati Streetcar News.”  So, I started a new thread, moderators please move if you disagree with this approach.

 

Once again, here’s the map I had posted on the other thread for reference. Also included is a very rough diagram of an Uptown Transit Center located at University Plaza.  Once again one way streets are reconfigured two way where required.

 

14654794421_e25cddf1de_b.jpg

14655781104_1636fdf5c8.jpg

 

I wanted to do a line-by-line breakdown, including miles, Points of Interest (POI’s), Neighborhood Business Districts (NBD’s), Census Tracts (2010), Census Tracts population (2010,) and Connections. 

 

For Census Tracts, I included Census Block Groups adjacent to the line.  For census tracts adjacent to multiple lines, I attributed it to one line or the other to avoid double counting.  Some areas of some census block groups were admittedly a little far of a walk from the streetcar line. On the other hand, population has no doubt increased in areas of uptown where new development has occurred since 2010.  Also, I would think the census wouldn’t be good at counting the student population, and the “daytime population” counting the workers at all the different facilities would be a different matter altogether. 

 

 

Route: Vine St. up the hill

 

Miles: 0.8

POI’s: N/A

NBD’s: N/A

2010 Census Tracts: N/A

2010 Census Tracts Pop: N/A

Connections: Downtown Streetcar, Uptown Transit Center

 

Route: Clifton Heights/ Clifton

 

Miles: 1 mile double track on Clifton, 0.5 miles single track each on McMillan and Calhoun

POI’s: University of Cincinnati, U Square at the Loop, Hughes High School, Deaconess Hospital, Stratford Heights, Hebrew Union College, Burnet Woods, Good Samaritan Hospital

NBD’s: Clifton Heights, Clifton Gaslight

2010 Census Tracts: 72-1,71-2, 70-2, 70-3, 29-1, 29-2, 30-3, 26-1, 25-1

2010 Census Tracts Pop: 13,254

Connections: Uptown Transit Center

 

Route: Vine St. to Zoo

 

Miles: 0.9

POI’s: Views on Vine, Stetson Square, Hampton Inn, Mariott, EPA, VA, Zoo

NBD’s: Short Vine

2010 Census Tracts: 30-1,30-2, 33-2

2010 Census Tracts Pop: 2,777

Connections: Uptown Transit Center

 

Route: Taft/Burnet to Hospitals

 

Miles:1.7

POI’s: Christ Hospital offices, Cincinnati Public Schools Office, Hauck Gardens, Tri Health Bethesda Oak Complex, Vernon Manor, Children's Hospital Offices, Talbert House/Crossroads Center, Stetson Square, Barrett Cancer Center, Hoxworth,  Cincinnati Board of Health, UC medical colleges, UC Health, University Hospital, Children's Hospital, Children's Hospital Research Tower, Children's Hospital Burnet Ave. Offices, Rockdale Academy

NBD’s: some Corryville, bisects MLK

2010 Census Tracts: 33-1,32-1, 270-2, 270-4, 69-2, 68-2,69-1

2010 Census Tracts Pop: 6,725

Connections: Uptown Transit Center

 

Route: Walnut Hills

 

Miles: 3.2

POI’s: Campus Park (formerly McMillan Manor,) new Women's Drop Inn Center, Union Institute & University, Lighthouse Youth Services, Essex Studios bldg, Dohn community high school, Kroger, Walnut Hills Library, Alms Apts, St Ursula Academy, UC College of Applied Science, high rises overlooking river, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield Offices, St. Francis de Sales, Purcell Marion High School, Evanston Academy (Hoffman,) Evanston Community Center, Walnut Hills High School, Xavier University, University Station

NBD’s: Walnut Hills, East Walnut Hills

2010 Census Tracts: 22-1, 267-1,267-2,19-1,37-1, 37-2, 20-1, 20-2, 42-1, 42-2, 41-1, 41-2, 39-3, 38-1,38-2, 38-3, 66-2, 65-2

2010 Census Tracts Pop: 15,455

Connections: Uptown Transit Center, Wasson Way, Future I-71 Light Rail

 

Route: Auburn Ave.

 

Miles: 0.6

POI’s: The Christ Hospital, Christ Hospital Joint and Spine Center, Taft Historic Site, Hamilton County Juvenile Center, Taft Elementary/Mt Auburn Community Center, Mt. Auburn International Academy

NBD’s: N/A

2010 Census Tracts: 23-1, 22-2, 22-3,18-2

2010 Census Tracts Pop: 3,683

Connections: Uptown Transit Center

 

Total Census Tracts Pop: 41,894

 


www.cincinnatiideas.com

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^ I don't necessarily think that there needs to be a special transit center for the streetcar routes. The only reason you would need it is if the streetcars themselves had a layover at this point, in which case you would want them to pull into a transit center rather than idling on the street and clogging up traffic. A standard streetcar stop could serve multiple routes until they branch off. So maybe the Jefferson/Corry stop is the last one that serves all routes and they branch off after that point.

 

The streetcars could display route information on their signs and people would use that into to get on the correct train. I don't even know if we really need to give them colors/numbers/letters. Heading north from The Banks they could display "To Findlay Market". At that point, they would either become "To The Banks" (take the existing Phase 1A route back downtown); "To The Zoo"  / "To Walnut Hills" / etc. Streetcars heading back from any of these destinations would simply display "To The Banks".

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^Here's my issue with that:  I can't think of how you would maintain a regular frequency of streetcars circulating the downtown loop in that case (or any of the uptown routes for that matter.)  If you had the first streetcar from downtown venture out on the 6.4 mile round trip Walnut Hills Route, and the second one do the short Auburn Ave Route, the second one would probably beat the first one back.  Maybe a computer could figure it out, but I could see a situation develop where two streetcars bunch together downtown and then there's a half hour gap until the next one comes.

 

Instead I was thinking there would be dedicated streetcars to each line that simply went back and forth all day to the Transit Center.  Perhaps the Zoo route only gets one and the Walnut Hills route gets 3-4.  The cars would travel up the hil from the MOF in the morning, stay uptown all day, and come back at night. In any case the downtown cars turn around at the Transit Center and head back down the hill to maintain a fixed frequency downtown.  In this scenario the downtown loop is simply another leg of the Uptown streetcar.  A transfer of course is less than ideal, but there would only be one, and I think you could make up for it with frequency of service.  Also by keeping the lines modular like this you could deal with a problem like a car that needs to be towed out of the way on a specific line without messing up the whole system.

 

I think you need the flexibility the transit center would provide, and I think the ability to take a streetcar off the roadway to deal with problems or to adjust schedules without going all the way down the hill would be hugely important.


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^^ A "transit center" would give streetcars a place to turn around, a place for riders to transfer without navigating across busy and/or large streets/intersections  (e.g. Jefferson & Corry), and a center for development to branch out from. It's not so much that it is "necessary," but that it's convenient considering the circumstances surrounding University Plaza, and its need to be redeveloped and urbanized, and the bonus of connecting Vine to Short Vine. It would also offer a place to have a second streetcar barn tucked away from street frontage.

 

As you mention idling, it would indeed offer a place where railcars or buses could idle and make sure intended connections can be made, which gets harder to accomplish as streetcar, BRT, and LRT lines become more plentiful.

 

Making strong nodes is important in a city where Jarrett Walker-style transit grids are a physical impossibility. The disjointed Uptown Transit District plan is nice considering the upgrade to the status quo, but creating a transit center would do wonders for making more trips possible with only one transfer, which is extremely important for attracting choice riders. As the system grows, I'm afraid a single busy intersection wouldn't be so flexible in accommodating creative solutions. More immediately, giving the city greater control of the University Plaza site would help ensure it becomes an asset to Uptown instead of remaining more or less a blackhole for urbanity (as Kroger, until recently, was pushing very hard for).

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Also, modern streetcars do not need a turnaround since both ends can be used as the "front". For example, check out this turnaround point on the Seattle streetcar:

 

14307809246_c55c322535_c.jpg

 

An interesting exception is that Toronto's modern streetcars will be single-ended. Since their entire streetcar network is already built out with turnaround at the end of each line, they have no reason to have double-ended cars.

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Do the overhead wires look that bad in all areas or just above the so called turnaround? I'm a big supporter but don't know too much about those type of details, but those wires look terrible to me.

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Do the overhead wires look that bad in all areas or just above the so called turnaround? I'm a big supporter but don't know too much about those type of details, but those wires look terrible to me.

 

It's just because you have so many tracks in one area there.  That appears to be 2 straightaways, plus a turn from each track, maybe more that I can't see.  Normally, you just have a single wire running parallel with the track, which looks fine and actually makes the system more usable because you can look for it if you get lost while exploring an unfamiliar area.  The situation seen above is fairly rare.

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Also, modern streetcars do not need a turnaround since both ends can be used as the "front".

 

I'm aware of that, but you still need to do some special configuring to get it to work. Like having stations in the median, as pictured in Seattle. The design gymnastics are simplified and more flexible in a dedicated space. I'm not really sure what the downsides are that you see to a transit center; your assertion was merely that it's not needed. I'm unaware of anyone saying it is "needed," just that it would be a good idea.

 

The only credible negative I've heard is that Short Vine business owners apparently don't want the streetcar on Short Vine, but I'm not convinced that's in itself reason to abandon the idea, especially since they might be persuaded otherwise by facts, data, and flashy renderings.

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Also, modern streetcars do not need a turnaround since both ends can be used as the "front".

 

I'm aware of that, but you still need to do some special configuring to get it to work. Like having stations in the median, as pictured in Seattle. The design gymnastics are simplified and more flexible in a dedicated space. I'm not really sure what the downsides are that you see to a transit center; your assertion was merely that it's not needed. I'm unaware of anyone saying it is "needed," just that it would be a good idea.

 

The only credible negative I've heard is that Short Vine business owners apparently don't want the streetcar on Short Vine, but I'm not convinced that's in itself reason to abandon the idea, especially since they might be persuaded otherwise by facts, data, and flashy renderings.

 

There will be a large cost to the city to acquire a parcel and develop it into a transit center. It would not be cheap for the city to buy University Plaza. On the other hand, the city already owns the streets and the sidewalks. Why complicate things when the system can be so much simpler and cheaper?

 

I also see it as the difference between a streetcar system and a light rail system. The streetcar primarily runs in the streets and doesn't need much more infrastructure than relatively basic stops. Light rail can have more dedicated right-of-way and/or tunnels, and true "stations" as opposed to "stops", which could include a transit center where multiple lines branch off or cross each other.

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Thanks for the photo taestell.  On my map, I was thinking each line would end in a Y configuration like shown, however, I hadn't considered there could be a stop in the middle of the "Y" like this.  I think I should revise my Transit Center platforms and X's to reflect this configuration.  However, I do agree with natininja that it would be easier for pedestrians and traffic to position the transfer stops off road where they could even share the same shelter.  Then you would just need special signaling to get the streetcars into the Transit Center.

 

It's actually kind of heartening you think we could pull off a system like this without a transit center, because I consider it  a longshot that it would actually get built, and the land will probably be repurposed for something else soon.  I could see John Cranley going out of his way to quash using University Plaza for anything streetcar related. 

 

PS whoops! just saw your last post.  Agree it would cost some bucks.


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Bit of a diversion. This was posted as a 1911 photo of the Cincinnati Car Company which made streetcars.

This is, I believe on the SW corner of Spring Grove & Mitchell. Currently a car dealership. There was another building on the north side of Mitchell which is, I think, an auto parts store.

CincinnatiCarCompany_zpscf3bd394.jpg

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Bit of a diversion. This was posted as a 1911 photo of the Cincinnati Car Company which made streetcars.

This is, I believe on the SW corner of Spring Grove & Mitchell. Currently a car dealership. There was another building on the north side of Mitchell which is, I think, an auto parts store.

CincinnatiCarCompany_zpscf3bd394.jpg

 

Pretty sure this ended up being a Swallen's store -- who or this list even remembers Swallens? -- and I think I bought a refrigerator there.

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^I remember Al Schottlekotte talking about Swallen's in a WCET documentary about him :D

 

But anyway, to be on topic, I like the idea of a streetcar "transit center"...maybe something like Tampa's one (the DT end of the TECO line, IIRC).

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Also, modern streetcars do not need a turnaround since both ends can be used as the "front".

 

I'm aware of that, but you still need to do some special configuring to get it to work. Like having stations in the median, as pictured in Seattle. The design gymnastics are simplified and more flexible in a dedicated space. I'm not really sure what the downsides are that you see to a transit center; your assertion was merely that it's not needed. I'm unaware of anyone saying it is "needed," just that it would be a good idea.

 

The only credible negative I've heard is that Short Vine business owners apparently don't want the streetcar on Short Vine, but I'm not convinced that's in itself reason to abandon the idea, especially since they might be persuaded otherwise by facts, data, and flashy renderings.

 

There will be a large cost to the city to acquire a parcel and develop it into a transit center. It would not be cheap for the city to buy University Plaza. On the other hand, the city already owns the streets and the sidewalks. Why complicate things when the system can be so much simpler and cheaper?

 

I also see it as the difference between a streetcar system and a light rail system. The streetcar primarily runs in the streets and doesn't need much more infrastructure than relatively basic stops. Light rail can have more dedicated right-of-way and/or tunnels, and true "stations" as opposed to "stops", which could include a transit center where multiple lines branch off or cross each other.

 

It's not like purchasing some property (for another car barn) isn't inevitable. I wish I had a dollar amount to attach to various UP eminent domain proposals, but unfortunately I wouldn't know where to start. I also don't know what's legal. (e.g. Can the city take more than just a Vine-to-Short Vine strip of UP and use 3CDC, PGCDA, or other PPP money to create a mixed-use development?) Reconnecting Vine to Short Vine, even if exclusively for transit and pedestrians, certainly has a high value by itself. Using Short Vine for streetcars certainly also has value. As you want to emphasize the streetcar/LRT distinction, Jefferson is a far inferior street (vs. Short Vine) for streetcar functionality and TOD.

 

We should also consider ROI and not just capital costs. And we should have an eye to dual-use of track for LRT, as in the basin. Especially if the forest route is chosen for the Vine Street ascent, we need to have some foresight for integrating streetcar and LRT precisely in the vicinity we're talking about. And there's no better time than the present, when UP is destined to be but not yet rebuilt, to consider possibilities of using that site. 10-15 years down the road, when the LRT ball is rolling and there are 5-10 year old buildings on the site would be a horrible time to entertain using eminent domain for light rail facilities.

 

Pretty sure this ended up being a Swallen's store -- who or this list even remembers Swallens? -- and I think I bought a refrigerator there.

 

I definitely remember Swallens, but not at that location!

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Here's a revised diagram of my Uptown Transit Center.  White boxes are transfer platforms.  The platform of the right is for Taft/Burnet to Hospitals, Walnut Hills, and Auburn Ave. routes.  The platform on the left is for Vine St. to Zoo, Clifton Heights/Clifton, and Downtown routes.  Red box is car barn.  Blue outline represents a covered canopy.  I took some liberties rearranging some of the street grid, eliminating Corryville Triangle Park.  You could probably do the transit center in a smaller footprint than this if you wanted to, please excuse my MS Paint skills.

 

14487625787_954d68e0db_c.jpg

 

Or... how about this one for the sports fans?  Perhaps you can move the Kroger to across from Old St. George in this scenario.  Since Xavier is connected via the Walnut Hills line, you could rename the Crosstown Shootout the Streetcar Shootout (although talk radio might have a little too much fun with that one.)  And, Short Vine could be a game day tail gate area.  And you would have a modern arena thoroughly connected to uptown and downtown via transit. 

 

14487625327_81797fdf07_c.jpg


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Well, Kroger at this point is committed to a store on MLK, and will close both the Corryville and Walnut Hills locations when it is complete.

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Well, Kroger at this point is committed to a store on MLK, and will close both the Corryville and Walnut Hills locations when it is complete.

 

It's off-topic, so post in the urban groceries thread if it needs to, but this is the first I've heard about closing the Walnut Hills store.  Do you have a link for this?  It's been improving along with the neighborhood, and I'm sure WHAC would fight to keep it.  I'll be disappointed if it's true.

 

Also, where on MLK?

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Well, Kroger at this point is committed to a store on MLK, and will close both the Corryville and Walnut Hills locations when it is complete.

 

Sherman, do you have any credible source for this? I have a feeling that this rumor may be true, since it fits Kroger's preferred business model (closing the smaller neighborhood stores and building a large megastore to serve an multiple neighborhood area). However I have also heard from other sources that this rumor is totally false.

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The current car barn can handle up to 12 streetcars. This is enough to handle the downtown/OTR loop, uptown connector, and possibly 2-3 extensions from there. When it comes time for us to built another car barn, we will want to build it as far from downtown as possible where the land is cheaper, and won't want to put it at a prominent corner where some tax-generating redevelopment would be possible.

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The current car barn can handle up to 12 streetcars. This is enough to handle the downtown/OTR loop, uptown connector, and possibly 2-3 extensions from there. When it comes time for us to built another car barn, we will want to build it as far from downtown as possible where the land is cheaper, and won't want to put it at a prominent corner where some tax-generating redevelopment would be possible.

 

Yes, I basically agree with this, except I don't necessarily think "as far from downtown as possible" is important. But low land value, yes. And definitely not on a major street corner. If it were going to go on the UP site, which is likely a bad site due to high land values, it should be tucked into the center of the block.

 

When I sai "It's not like purchasing some property (for another car barn) isn't inevitable," I meant that use of eminent domain is inevitable. So while use of ED adds costs, it's not like the suggestion is earth-shattering compared to the inevitable status quo. Taking (a) strip(s) of land should be cheap relative to taking a whole block.

 

When I did mention possibly placing the car barn on the site, I mentioned tucking it into the center of the block. But I think taestell is right that it's probably a bad location. As much of the site that can be put to economic use should be.

 

thebillshark, I think in your maps you're not leaving enough room for buildings fronting streets.

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Do the overhead wires look that bad in all areas or just above the so called turnaround? I'm a big supporter but don't know too much about those type of details, but those wires look terrible to me.

 

It's just because you have so many tracks in one area there.  That appears to be 2 straightaways, plus a turn from each track, maybe more that I can't see.  Normally, you just have a single wire running parallel with the track, which looks fine and actually makes the system more usable because you can look for it if you get lost while exploring an unfamiliar area.  The situation seen above is fairly rare.

 

Makes sense.  Thanks.

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Well, Kroger at this point is committed to a store on MLK, and will close both the Corryville and Walnut Hills locations when it is complete.

 

Sherman, do you have any credible source for this? I have a feeling that this rumor may be true, since it fits Kroger's preferred business model (closing the smaller neighborhood stores and building a large megastore to serve an multiple neighborhood area). However I have also heard from other sources that this rumor is totally false.

 

I agree, please share more details on the supposed MLK Kroger.  I've called every source I can think of and everyone has told me that putting a big box grocery near MLK is not part of the plan and they've never heard it before.  The plan there is for medical office users.  Tech, etc.  The leases that are holding up the development at the Corryville location end next year.  The construction on the new store could be underway before MLK exit is even finished.

 

That being said, I do believe they will close the WH store when the new Corryville location is finished.  They are 1.1 miles apart.  Kroger is a for-profit business, and unfortunately, that means removing duplicative services. They also don't own the land where their current store is so they have no interest in renovating it when they don't own the land and the land owner's are apparently huge a**holes who won't spend a penny improving the land.

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My contacts at Kroger real estate tell me that they are definitely planning on renovating the Corryville store as soon as the last tenant's lease expires (later this year). Any talk of a new store at MLK is not based on actual Kroger plans.

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We now have council majority support for planning of phase 2 of the streetcar

 

http://www.bizjournals.com/cincinnati/news/2014/07/17/exclusive-council-majority-wants-to-start-planning.html?ana=twt

 

However, its still not enough to overcome the mayoral veto which will be sure to follow any proposed ordinance.

 

Motions however are another story

 

 

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We now have council majority support for planning of phase 2 of the streetcar

 

http://www.bizjournals.com/cincinnati/news/2014/07/17/exclusive-council-majority-wants-to-start-planning.html?ana=twt

 

However, its still not enough to overcome the mayoral veto which will be sure to follow any proposed ordinance.

 

Motions however are another story

 

 

 

At the last Believe in Cincinnati meeting, Kevin Flynn came out and admitted, "streetcar opponents will never admit that any of the new development along the route was caused or influenced by the streetcar." They will never admit to there being a positive ROI. So when certain politicians say, "we need to wait for Phase 1 to be proven successful," what they are really saying is, "I will never admit that Phase 1 was successful, and I will never vote in favor of Phase 2."

 

I am very happy, though, that we have five people voting in favor of studying Phase 2. Even if we don't start building it until Cranley's out of office, we need to start the planning immediately.

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Excited to see some of the CBD Stops and how they will be incorporated into the surrounding area.

 

Will be cool to see actual track running next to office and residential towers. 

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The current car barn can handle up to 12 streetcars. This is enough to handle the downtown/OTR loop, uptown connector, and possibly 2-3 extensions from there. When it comes time for us to built another car barn, we will want to build it as far from downtown as possible where the land is cheaper, and won't want to put it at a prominent corner where some tax-generating redevelopment would be possible.

 

Yes, I basically agree with this, except I don't necessarily think "as far from downtown as possible" is important. But low land value, yes. And definitely not on a major street corner. If it were going to go on the UP site, which is likely a bad site due to high land values, it should be tucked into the center of the block.

 

When I sai "It's not like purchasing some property (for another car barn) isn't inevitable," I meant that use of eminent domain is inevitable. So while use of ED adds costs, it's not like the suggestion is earth-shattering compared to the inevitable status quo. Taking (a) strip(s) of land should be cheap relative to taking a whole block.

 

When I did mention possibly placing the car barn on the site, I mentioned tucking it into the center of the block. But I think taestell is right that it's probably a bad location. As much of the site that can be put to economic use should be.

 

thebillshark, I think in your maps you're not leaving enough room for buildings fronting streets.

 

Agree that the car barn could be moved somewhere else, I drew it in just because I had that area already set aside for streetcars to park or idle.  But that could probably be accomplished in a more space efficient manner, for example simply by extending the length of the "Y" leg at the platforms.  The actual barn could be moved to a vacant lot out on the Walnut Hills route or something.  I would think (speculating) if you built out all the legs on my map you would be up against the 12 streetcar limit.  I heard that if a new barn had to be built, however, it could just be a barn and the current MOF could handle the maintenance.

 

Agree about street facing buildings at the transit center, I was kind of dancing around the current Kroger footprint when I first sketched this out.  But if you were redoing everything from scratch you could make this a pretty awesome mixed use development following all best design principles. 

 

I wonder what a high rise or skyscraper would look like in this location compared to the rest of the downtown skyline?  I wonder if anyone has ever proposed one for Uptown before (excluding hospital towers.)

 

In regards to the arena sketch, I just read the UrbanCincy proposal about building the new arena next to the casino.  Agree that's a great idea because then you can get casino/Gilbert money involved.  Would probably be good for casino booking concerts in all seasons too.  However I was thinking that one thing about UC arena at University Plaza though is UC might be agreeable to accommodate a transit center plan like this. 

 

If some of the stuff I say seems pie in the sky or unrealistic because of x, y, or z, just know that I have fun kicking ideas around on this board and I always learn something new from everybody else's posts.

 


www.cincinnatiideas.com

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^No problem with kicking ideas around! IIRC the LACMTA Expo Line was inspired by some fantasy maps painted on LA walls (transit murals, I guess) ;) . But then again, the Expo Line was built upon the long abandoned Pacific Electric "Santa Monica Air Line." But anyway...

 

thebillshark: any ideas for a cross-town route (e.g., Cincinnati Museum Center to the Casino, or to the Casino and toward Sawyer Point)? how about lines to Price Hill or NKY? Personally I'd love to see a Banks/Newport/Covington loop. There is a lot of valuable land that could be developed as TOD across the river. It would tie the riverfront urban areas together in a really wonderful way both for tourists/visitors (both stadiums, the Newport Aquarium, and other riverfront attractions all on one loop) and residents (potential for TOD; linking TANK and SORTA transit centers together). Now if there could just be a new bridge built over the Licking ;)

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I appreciate people throwing ideas around. Any criticism I offer is intended to be constructive, so I hope it comes across that way. I also realize the ideas that come out are sometimes off the top of the head and not thought out thoroughly before pen hits paper, fingers hit keys, or MS Paint brush hits Google Map. Thus is the nature of a casual forum such as this one.

 

If Kroger really is intending to break ground on a new store at UP later this year or early next year, I'm afraid it's likely Short Vine will have to be scrapped as a possible route. There would likely be too much winding and loss of speed/time without using the UP site. A tragic loss of opportunity, IMO. A streetcar on Jefferson will not provide nearly the same impact. I hope council hurries up and approves the Uptown study, and whoever does the study takes a look at these UP/Short Vine possibilities.

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^^ I agree about Newport/Covington...they should really get on top of that. Would be interesting to see opinion polls for support within those two cities and their counties.

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^A few questions about the interesting concept of going to NKY: 1)  Would the constitution require an interstate Compact?  As you know it's a technicality in the US constitution that says congress must approve a collaboration between two states.

 

2) Could TANK get into the interstate streetcar as a supporter since in theory they might be able to run fewer buses clear across the river.  They could terminate more routes in Covington and have people transfer.  A single fare agreement could be worked out.  This would provide TANK a lot of economy as far as reduced running times, labor costs, rolling stock requirements.

 

3) What is the ridership on the South Bank shuttle?  What is the level of interstate ridership TANK is already getting on their interstate routes?  Seems like this is an easily quantifiable baseline for ridership projections.  Nobody could possibly argue "nobody will ride the streetcar to NKY" when they're looking at an existing market already using transit for interstate trips.

 

My sense is that everybody knows an interstate streetcar could work, but there is some understandable hesitation about opening up interstate politics and coordination among multiple providers and governments.  Seems like OKI could play a lead role in bringing supporters to the table.

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From what I could tell this weekend when I was biking around (and no, I never crashed because of the tracks, thank God for those warning signs...) the main focus is at the corner of Race and 12th, so this is the current trackwork progress. I might have missed a new station or two as well, when I got home I had forgotten if I saw any new ones. With the exception of the station in Washington Park they are all so unobtrusive right now that you almost don't notice them unless you are looking for it. I am sure that will change once the ticketing, benches, canopy etc. are installed.

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Detroit's M-1 Line just released a website where you can track the construction of their streetcar on an interactive map. This would be a pretty cool addition to the Cincinnati Streetcar's public information outreach. By no means do I think they need to, but it is a pretty good example to set.

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^^ I agree about Newport/Covington...they should really get on top of that. Would be interesting to see opinion polls for support within those two cities and their counties.

 

My sense is that it would break down much like in Ohio.  Newport and Covington would like to be connected with Cincinnati's streetcar system, but the rest of Kenton County and Campbell County would be opposed to it.  I don't know if either city has the ability to build something like this without a lot of help from the feds.  They don't have the same kind of tax base that Cincinnati has, which also needed some assistance.

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From what I could tell this weekend when I was biking around (and no, I never crashed because of the tracks, thank God for those warning signs...) the main focus is at the corner of Race and 12th, so this is the current trackwork progress. I might have missed a new station or two as well, when I got home I had forgotten if I saw any new ones. With the exception of the station in Washington Park they are all so unobtrusive right now that you almost don't notice them unless you are looking for it. I am sure that will change once the ticketing, benches, canopy etc. are installed.

 

Awesome. In a few short weeks, three more of those dots and the intersection will be yellow too! 

 

They started putting up handrails on the Elm St Streetcar stops, but we won't see shelters or TVMs for two years. They're easy to install last minute and try don't want them getting vandalized in the meantime.

 

Also, I just got word that the stops have been named. They should be posted officially sometime in the next month.

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^^ I agree about Newport/Covington...they should really get on top of that. Would be interesting to see opinion polls for support within those two cities and their counties.

 

My sense is that it would break down much like in Ohio.  Newport and Covington would like to be connected with Cincinnati's streetcar system, but the rest of Kenton County and Campbell County would be opposed to it.  I don't know if either city has the ability to build something like this without a lot of help from the feds.  They don't have the same kind of tax base that Cincinnati has, which also needed some assistance.

 

The southbank shuttle runs so frequently it is pretty much already a streetcar. It gets filled up some for Reds games, concerts (especially the Beyonce concert)

and out of towners staying at the Marriott and DoubleTree in Covington use it.

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