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Cincinnati Streetcar Update

While there hasn’t been a whole lot of big news relating to the Cincinnati Streetcar lately there have certainly been things going on. On November 5th the Request for Qualifications (RFQ) to design, build, operate and maintain the Cincinnati Streetcar project was sent out.

As of 8:30pm November 16th there have been 21 companies to download the RFQ packet. Now this does not necessarily mean that all will submit bids for this project, but the range of companies goes from local companies like Glaserworks and DNK Architects to national companies like URS and Parsons Transportation Group. These companies have until the end of the workday on December 18th to submit their bids.

I also got in touch with City Architect Michael Moore and was informed that City Manager Milton Dohoney should be reporting back on financing in early 2009. This is important because since the Streetcar motion was passed by City Council in late April this has been the number one tast for Milton Dohoney – raising the necessary private contributions. If these contributions aren’t raised then the motion that was passed is no longer good and things will go back to square one. So far I have heard positive feedback about this fundraising process, but nothing specific outside the $3.5 million that Duke Energy has pledged to the project.

In addition to all this I decided to have a little fun with that streetcar congestion graphic I posted last week. That graphic was from almost 100 years ago, so I thought it might be interesting to give it a 100-year update. I attempted to keep the look/feel as close as possible, and with the help of Brad Thomas we calculated out numbers for the modern version.

Ford Taurus dimensions were used for average auto size with an average of 1.2 passengers. Skoda ST10 dimensions were used for average streetcar size with an average of 85 passengers. What was seen is an increase in both the average space taken up by streetcar passengers and auto passengers. Auto space saw a 142% increase which dwarfed the 26% increase for streetcar passengers.

Early 20th Century Graphic vs. New 21st Century Graphic

By Randy A. Simes

Randy is an award-winning urban planner who founded UrbanCincy in May 2007. He grew up on Cincinnati’s west side in Covedale, and graduated from the University of Cincinnati’s nationally acclaimed School of Planning in June 2009. In addition to maintaining ownership and serving as the managing editor for UrbanCincy, Randy has worked professionally as a planning consultant throughout the United States, Korea and the Middle East. After brief stints in Atlanta and Chicago, he currently lives in the Daechi neighborhood of Seoul’s Gangnam district.