Cincinnati streetcar project finally underway

October 31, 2013 by  

After six years, construction is moving ahead on Cincinnati’s streetcar, a project that is anticipated to cost approximately $133 million in total, with $22 million already spent. The scheduled completion target date for the first part of the project is mid-2016 and work is being carried out quickly.

The project’s slogan is “Let’s Go”, with the public promised monthly reports that will let them know how much progress is being made. The first part of the streetcar to be finished will be a segment between Over-the-Rhine and the Banks, a planned mixed-use community being developed along Cincinnati’s riverfront.

Meg Olberding, speaking for the city, noted that most streetcar projects around the country have people both for and against the idea, so the situation in Cincinnati isn’t unusual. Rick Thompson, who owns a Johnny Rockets franchise in the Banks, is glad to see the streetcar go in. He believes that when people start to use it and see how convenient it is, they will want it to go throughout the city.

Thompson also thinks it’s “crucial” to have a means of moving people more quickly than they can travel today, and calls the streetcar a “jewel” for Cincinnati.

City officials could work with brochure printers to create a mailer for residents. They could use it to explain the benefits of light rail to the environment, describe the project and the phases of its construction, show route maps, and even give a fare schedule to help explain what may be an alien system to some.