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Track work is 70% done.

 

Overhead Wiring is 77% done.

 

Fun fact: if the delay never happened we would receive our first streetcar this month. Currently scheduled for September.

 

All from Jason Williams (Enquirer) tweets

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So, instead of P&G or Macy's stepping up to sponsor the streetcar and help fund operations, they are afraid to do so because Cranley has kept campaigning against it the entire time he's been in office and corporations don't want to touch the hot potato.

 

I would bet my life savings P&G, Macy's or any other local Fortune 500 company gives two craps what Cranley thinks, and in no way are they afraid of him or what he could do.

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Streetcar team details more complete cost estimate for 2013 pause

Chris Wetterich - Staff reporter and columnist - Cincinnati Business Courier

 

The cost of pausing the Cincinnati streetcar project for nearly three weeks in December 2013 could exceed $2 million, depending on what kind of deal the city can strike with its consultant on the manufacturing of streetcar vehicles.

 

Under questioning from council’s transportation committee, the city’s streetcar team said it is negotiating an overrun payment to its consultant in Elmira, N.Y., where the vehicles are being made. The vehicles will be delayed six months from the original schedule. The streetcar team’s conservative estimate is that the consultant could have to be paid $1 million, but it is continuing to negotiate that amount, and it could be less.

 

That payment would bring the cost of the three-week pause to more than $2 million, which would come out of the project’s $9.7 million contingency fund. The city already has spent $1 million because of the City Council’s decision to delay the project.

 

Cont


"It's just fate, as usual, keeping its bargain and screwing us in the fine print..." - John Crichton

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The recently proposed and apparently absolutely essential Cranley Viaduct, if built, introduces some interesting possibilities for extending the streetcar on the unused rapid transit right-of-way into South Cumminsville and Northside.  The Cranley Viaduct touches down very close to the old CH&D ROW, then meets Elmore St. in line with it.  This means that if a streetcar or light rail line were built in the subway, then on the old surface ROW, then on the Cranley Viaduct, the line could continue under I-74 on the old CH&D ROW directly into Northside. 

 

cincystateconnector_zpspsxswlgz.png

 

The issue with using the existing Ludlow Viaduct to link transit on the old ROW or on Ludlow Ave. and Northside is that the deck of the bridge would likely need to be completely rebuilt which would be very expensive and cause a big year-long disruption.  Also streetcars or light rail trains would have to brake on the viaduct's mild slope to stop at the 5-way intersection at the viaduct's base. 

 

Use of the Cranley Viaduct would avoid the disruption and create transit access to this forgotten section of the city...link it not only to downtown but also to neighboring Northside.  If an underpass can't be efficiently punched through I-74's berm then the line could simply reach Northside via Spring Grove. 

 

 

 

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The Cranley Viaduct can only be used for rail transit later if it is built with a sacrificial slab now. Considering that DOTE wasn't even planning on building the new Western Hills Viaduct with the ability to support rail, I don't think they are considering it for this new viaduct.

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I still think Jake should write the mayor suggesting this idea.

 

Is the CH&D ROW  through Northside the one that lines up with Vandalia St.? If so the Gantry (probably among other stuff) is now in the way.  I noticed for the first time that there was what looked to be an old ROW going directly through the heart of Northside browsing Zillow the other day. 


www.cincinnatiideas.com

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^ That's correct.  The self-storage units on Vandalia are on the right-of-way.  There's one or two buildings built over it on Powers and Dreman too, but the Gantry is by far the biggest thing.  It's unfortunate that the underpass at I-74 was completely obliterated and filled with earth.  It almost seems like a deliberate attempt to sever the right-of-way and prevent any reuse. 

 

Here's what Hamilton and Blue Rock looked like in the 1940s when the railroad was still active. 

 

http://www.jjakucyk.com/transit/chd/large-21.html

 

picture-21.jpg

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I hate to be the topic police, but I think there's somewhere else for this discussion (which is a good discussion and should continue!)

 

In streetcar news, Deatrick said the goal is to have Walnut repaved by the Allstar game all the way from CP to 3rd (which was previously not the plan, would have been done in the fall) and to have Main Street rail to 6th by the All Star game.  There will be no construction for the entire week of the festivities.  Streetcars will be on the streets being tested by early October. 

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Can someone explain how SORTA came up with $650k per year or so on new fare revenue estimates?

 

If 3,000 riders per day, 365 days per year, at $1 fare that is $1,095,000.  So, $650k would assume $1,780.00 in fare revenue, which would be 1,780 riders per day IF 100% capture.  I have a feeling there will be 3,000 riders per day on average over the first year.  We see this already in a nicely built system like that in Tucson where the ridership is exceeding expectations.  Also we already see this in Minneapolis on their light rail system where ridership is close to or almost at 2030 projections.

 

On another note, SORTA may have simply printed as a worst case scenario, Cranley ran to the Enquirer with the information to create hysteria, and it will come back and show, "Oh, this is actually worst case scenario and the range goes up to 4,000 riders per day and $1.3 million revenue on fares per year".  But then the Enquirer won't print that, it will only be the Biz Journal, and all suburbanites will be misinformed for years to come...........

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In streetcar news, Deatrick said the goal is to have Walnut repaved by the Allstar game all the way from CP to 3rd (which was previously not the plan, would have been done in the fall) and to have Main Street rail to 6th by the All Star game.  There will be no construction for the entire week of the festivities.  Streetcars will be on the streets being tested by early October. 

 

That's great news. It looks like they will finish repaving Race this week or next.

 

Do you know how extensively Central Parkway will be repaved? Are they only going to repave eastbound Central Parkway between Race and Walnut, and then around the tracks on Main?

 

I was also disappointed that they did not repave the short sections of street between Elm and Race in OTR. I know that cost is a concern, but you'd think it wouldn't be much additional cost since the crews are already there. It's probably more of a concern in the CBD than in OTR.

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Can someone explain how SORTA came up with $650k per year or so on new fare revenue estimates?

 

If 3,000 riders per day, 365 days per year, at $1 fare that is $1,095,000.  So, $650k would assume $1,780.00 in fare revenue, which would be 1,780 riders per day IF 100% capture.  I have a feeling there will be 3,000 riders per day on average over the first year.  We see this already in a nicely built system like that in Tucson where the ridership is exceeding expectations.  Also we already see this in Minneapolis on their light rail system where ridership is close to or almost at 2030 projections.

 

On another note, SORTA may have simply printed as a worst case scenario, Cranley ran to the Enquirer with the information to create hysteria, and it will come back and show, "Oh, this is actually worst case scenario and the range goes up to 4,000 riders per day and $1.3 million revenue on fares per year".  But then the Enquirer won't print that, it will only be the Biz Journal, and all suburbanites will be misinformed for years to come...........

 

Proposed fare

 

$1.00 – 2-hour pass

$0.50 – half-fare 2-hour pass (must present valid Fare Deal card to fare inspector upon request)

$2.00 - day pass

 

Existing Metro passes accepted

 

-      All 30-day rolling passes – no additional fare

 

-      Day passes – no additional fare

 

-      Transfers – no additional fare **

 

-      Fare Deal stickers – no additional fare +

 

-      Fare Deal card – $0.50 half-fare pass required*

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Can someone explain how SORTA came up with $650k per year or so on new fare revenue estimates?

 

If 3,000 riders per day, 365 days per year, at $1 fare that is $1,095,000.  So, $650k would assume $1,780.00 in fare revenue, which would be 1,780 riders per day IF 100% capture.  I have a feeling there will be 3,000 riders per day on average over the first year.  We see this already in a nicely built system like that in Tucson where the ridership is exceeding expectations.  Also we already see this in Minneapolis on their light rail system where ridership is close to or almost at 2030 projections.

 

On another note, SORTA may have simply printed as a worst case scenario, Cranley ran to the Enquirer with the information to create hysteria, and it will come back and show, "Oh, this is actually worst case scenario and the range goes up to 4,000 riders per day and $1.3 million revenue on fares per year".  But then the Enquirer won't print that, it will only be the Biz Journal, and all suburbanites will be misinformed for years to come...........

 

From my understanding of Paul Grether's presentation to Council yesterday the discrepancy is in thinking about it as 3,000 unique riders per day versus 3,000 rides per day. Since the $1 ticket you purchase is good for two hours on the streetcar, I might ride from the Banks to Findlay, to Findlay to the Square, and to the Square back to the Banks all within my two hours, but I'll still only have paid the initial $1 fare, not $3.

 

I could be mistaken but I think that's the gist of the argument as to why the projections are lower. It has nothing to do with ridership levels and more to do with update fare structure.

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^ Correct.

 

1 million rides at $1 per fare does not equal $1,000,000.  Metro assumes to receive around 62 cents per ride when including all the discounts etc.  There are other things like when someone uses their monthly metro card, the streetcar gets a certain amount of money (something like 30 cents), and if a Tank rider uses their pass Tank pays Metro a certain amount of money (again, something much less than $1 per ride). 

 

 

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Proposed fare

 

$1.00 – 2-hour pass

$0.50 – half-fare 2-hour pass (must present valid Fare Deal card to fare inspector upon request)

$2.00 - day pass

 

Existing Metro passes accepted

 

-      All 30-day rolling passes – no additional fare

 

-      Day passes – no additional fare

 

-      Transfers – no additional fare **

 

-      Fare Deal stickers – no additional fare +

 

-      Fare Deal card – $0.50 half-fare pass required*

 

Does this mean that some of the revenue from Metro's 30-day and 1-day passes will go towards streetcar operations?

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At the City Council meeting today, Charlie Windbag is still proposing crancelling the entire streetcar project at this late stage.  If memory serves me right, when he was running for State Senate, he seemed to change his tune and say it was viable project and if elected he would help find state funding for Phase Ib/II.  Does anyone really take this guy seriously?

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^In his defense, once the rails get completed it would be super easy for his rubber tired trolleys to just follow that route, if he trots that tired idea out for a 5th time.  Just think of how much money would be saved now that paint is unnecessary!  :roll:

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Some great quotes from David Mann at today's meeting (from  Chris Wetterich @ChrisCinciBiz) :

 

"Sometimes I think some of us will not be happy unless the streetcar fails."

 

"Some capitalize on moments to drive home the idea with the public that the project is failing."

 

"It is incumbent on all of us to find positive ways to engage the [streetcar] process."

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Seelbach's motion to study Phase Ib costs passes 5-4.  Winburn lets City Manager know that this is just a motion, not an ordinance, and he is not required to follow it.  City Solicitor agrees with Winburn's assessment.

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Seelbach's motion to study Phase Ib costs passes 5-4.  Winburn lets City Manager know that this is just a motion, not an ordinance, and he is not required to follow it.  City Solicitor agrees with Winburn's assessment.

 

He may not be legally obligated to follow the motion, but the City Manager reports to City Council (not to the Mayor) and ought to follow it. Is there any precedent for the City Manager to simply ignore the direction of Council?

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He may not be legally obligated to follow the motion, but the City Manager report to City Council (not to the Mayor) and ought to follow it. Is there any precedent for the City Manager to simply ignore the direction of Council?

 

The City Manager actually reports to the Council and Mayor. Not only that, but the Mayor is the only person who can initiate the firing of the City Manager. So essentially, even if 5 (or 6 or 7 etc) members of Council are upset that the City Manager isn't following their direction via a Motion, they are powerless to do anything but whine in public about it. Granted, it isn't smart to upset half of the folks to which you "report," but in practice the only person the Manager needs to keep happy is the Mayor.

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News flash: We’re building a streetcar

David Mann, vice mayor, Cincinnati

 

Supporters and opponents of the streetcar have debated this issue at length across multiple election cycles, in many City Council meetings, and in daily conversation in person and online. In December 2013, City Council finally put that debate to bed. We paused, we reviewed, and we chose to move forward. The consequences, monetary and otherwise, of terminating the project at that point were absolutely unacceptable.

 

By most accounts, preparation for the streetcar opening in September 2016 is going well. Our project leaders are working around the clock to deliver this project on time and under budget. Citizens who spend time in Downtown and Over-the-Rhine have seen the rails put into the ground, new stations erected, and development sprouting up all over the line. Later this year, the city will receive its first streetcar vehicles, and soon after, those vehicles will begin running on our streets.

 

Cont


"It's just fate, as usual, keeping its bargain and screwing us in the fine print..." - John Crichton

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One thing I hope we can agree on is that the streetcar is being built, and it is in the city’s best interest that it succeeds.

 

Nope.  You won't get agreement on that, Mr. Mann.

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Charlie Winburn was just in the studio with Bill Cunningham on a 15-minute anti-streetcar rant.  Called for the project to be shut down immediately.  Said he's afraid of OTR. 

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What is he afraid of? Quadrillion dollar condo developments!?


“All truly great thoughts are conceived while walking.”
-Friedrich Nietzsche

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Said he's afraid of OTR. 

 

He's afraid of a shrinking constituency.

 

He marched in the Northside 4th of July parade with a entourage of 200+ including not one but two dance troupes, not one but two DJ w/sound systems, and he himself was on horseback along with 3-4 of his enforcers.  You can't make this stuff up. 

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David Mann is bizarre.  It's almost like he didn't pay any attention to the streetcar when he was campaigning, and now he seems to be totally on board.  And it only cost us a million dollars.

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If the police has to show cause to a judge before receiving search warrants, so should the media when making FOIA requests. Wishful thinking. So is my hoping that the Enquirer won't blast SORTA for paying a premium cost demanded by bidders once they see what the other bidders have offered.

 

Jason Williams ‏@jwilliamscincy  1m1 minute ago Cincinnati, OH

.@Enquirer to SORTA: Release streetcar bid docs or we'll sue you http://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/2015/04/16/enquirer-streetcar-sorta-legal/25876255/ … Public has a right to know


"Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you respond." -- Coach Lou Holtz

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The time frame is still open to submit bids to SORTA right? Isn't there a potential for companies to raise their price if they know exactly how many other companies have submitted a bid and who they are?

 

 


www.cincinnatiideas.com

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Companies can bid however they want and having some bids public while others haven't been received is a really terrible idea. Uneven playing field and brings in outside influences which isn't good. If the low bidder is the last to turn in a bid and sees they're 10 percent less than the next highest they'll just raise their bid to still be the lowest but be much closer to the second lowest bid. It's best to keep everything under wraps until all bids have been returned.

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David Mann is bizarre.  It's almost like he didn't pay any attention to the streetcar when he was campaigning, and now he seems to be totally on board.  And it only cost us a million dollars.

 

^ You'd be amazed at what one trip to Portland does to increase understanding. Most Cincinnatians have no idea what a modern streetcar is -- they, like David Mann, need to see it. Our very last trip ever to Portland is in September -- two trips, actually. Message me if you want to go.

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^ You'd be amazed at what one trip to Portland does to increase understanding. Most Cincinnatians have no idea what a modern streetcar is -- they, like David Mann, need to see it.

 

Cincinnatians that don't get out much are going to be absolutely shocked when they see it in person for the first time. Most of the opponents still think we're getting a "trolley".

 

Our very last trip ever to Portland is in September -- two trips, actually. Message me if you want to go.

 

Should be a great time to go, right after the new Orange Line and Tilikum Crossing (the bridge for everything but private automobiles) open.

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^ You'd be amazed at what one trip to Portland does to increase understanding. Most Cincinnatians have no idea what a modern streetcar is -- they, like David Mann, need to see it.

 

Cincinnatians that don't get out much are going to be absolutely shocked when they see it in person for the first time. Most of the opponents still think we're getting a "trolley".

 

Our very last trip ever to Portland is in September -- two trips, actually. Message me if you want to go.

 

Should be a great time to go, right after the new Orange Line and Tilikum Crossing (the bridge for everything but private automobiles) open.

 

^ Travis, that's what I'm thinking.

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I just got back from Germany last week.  I'm more convinced than ever on rail transit.  That country is so well connected by trains its hard to believe (streetcars, light rail, subway, regional, and highspeed lines).  We did everything via train the whole time we were there and loved it!  There's nothing like it here in the states (and I've spent time in all of the big cities here with subways, lightrail, etc).  Berlin was especially impressive with its use of streetcars.  Many of their vehicles were just like the ones we're getting here.  We should be very excited.  I don't need to preach to the choir here, but I think the fundamental problem is that this region is full of a majority of people who don't understand what streetcars are for (don't fully know why that is, but I suspect its due to lack of travel experiences or living elsewhere).  John's trips to Portland are exactly the kind of eye opening experience that these people desperately need.  At this point I think all we can do is hope that once our system is in place that at least some of these people will come downtown and use it and start to see its effectiveness in terms of moving pedestrians around efficiently and conveniently.  Regardless, I think this city is going to really take off once this system is running and we're going to see it extended all over the place whether our current council/mayor wants it to or not:)

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I just got back from Germany last week.  I'm more convinced than ever on rail transit.  That country is so well connected by trains its hard to believe (streetcars, light rail, subway, regional, and highspeed lines).  We did everything via train the whole time we were there and loved it!  There's nothing like it here in the states (and I've spent time in all of the big cities here with subways, lightrail, etc).  Berlin was especially impressive with its use of streetcars.  Many of their vehicles were just like the ones we're getting here.  We should be very excited.  I don't need to preach to the choir here, but I think the fundamental problem is that this region is full of a majority of people who don't understand what streetcars are for (don't fully know why that is, but I suspect its due to lack of travel experiences or living elsewhere).  John's trips to Portland are exactly the kind of eye opening experience that these people desperately need.  At this point I think all we can do is hope that once our system is in place that at least some of these people will come downtown and use it and start to see its effectiveness in terms of moving pedestrians around efficiently and conveniently.  Regardless, I think this city is going to really take off once this system is running and we're going to see it extended all over the place whether our current council/mayor wants it to or not:)

 

In 2017 many people considering systems are going to be coming to Cincinnati rather than to Portland.

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^ You'd be amazed at what one trip to Portland does to increase understanding. Most Cincinnatians have no idea what a modern streetcar is -- they, like David Mann, need to see it.

 

Cincinnatians that don't get out much are going to be absolutely shocked when they see it in person for the first time. Most of the opponents still think we're getting a "trolley".

 

Our very last trip ever to Portland is in September -- two trips, actually. Message me if you want to go.

 

Should be a great time to go, right after the new Orange Line and Tilikum Crossing (the bridge for everything but private automobiles) open.

 

^ Travis, that's what I'm thinking.

 

John, I may be interested. I'll let you know. I'm actually in Portland as I type this (leaving tomorrow) but its never too early to think about my return trip.

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Charlie Winburn was just in the studio with Bill Cunningham on a 15-minute anti-streetcar rant.

 

I blame jmecklenborg[/member] for my opening of the IHeartRadio app on my phone for the first time this year... Stumbled upon this interesting discussion from the April 1st episode of the Brian Thomas Morning Show (63:50 - 66:30). Caller Richard explained that he is an outside utility contractor who worked last Spring on Duke's move of their West End substation for the Brent Spence replacement project. Included in this was the move of a 1900 foot 138 kV transmission line that is immersed in oil. He broke it down further stating that this 1900 foot line was actually 3 individual cables that were pulled into a 9 inch pipe and then filled with oil. All at the cost of $1.5m.

 

Now what I didn't find clear was if this was an actual move or a retirement of the old and installation of a new. Duke's Phase 1b estimate includes nearly $8m for "retirement of existing Pipe Type equipment" in Vine St.

 

Richard was trying to make the point, and Brian was buying it, that 1900 feet at $1.5m is a drop in the bucket compared to the 1.2 miles needed for the streetcar extension. Wonder if either knows how many feet are in a mile...


"It's just fate, as usual, keeping its bargain and screwing us in the fine print..." - John Crichton

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I can't ever figure out if Brian Thomas is dumb, just playing dumb, or if he's stoned on the air.  I was on his show five years ago and within a month of my having rattled off factual rebuttals to subway myths there he was repeating the myths.  Was it in one ear and out the other?  Does he just not care?  Was he high again?

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