Updated 3/7: The Downtown streetcar is getting its finances all lined up: the City Council approved an operational plan today that commits up to *$294 million of Measure R transportation tax money over 30 years to cover the operation and maintenance of the system. Which means? The streetcar is happening, people (almost)! The vote also instructed the Department of Transportation and Bureau of Engineering to work with LA Streetcar Inc. and Councilmember Jose Huizar's office (whose district the streetcar primarily runs through) to report back with a project management plan in 30 days. The two city departments were also instructed to look into the feasibility of a wireless streetcar, like the one in Bordeaux, France.
The streetcar will be a four-mile fixed rail line that will run on city streets in a loop from the Civic Center to the Convention Center, running down Broadway through the Historic Core before heading into the Fashion District and South Park, and hitting the Financial District on the way back--it'll travel on Broadway, Eleventh, Figueroa, Seventh, and Hill. Half the cash for construction of the streetcar will come from the local tax Downtown voters approved in 2012, and today's vote also authorized LADOT and Metro to start applying to federal programs for the other half. Update: This is the last piece of the streetcar puzzle--Councilmember Huizar will be headed to DC soon to try to drum up the cash. The environmental review is currently underway, and the project still needs to be fully designed and engineered. If all goes according to plan, construction could start in late 2014 and the streetcar could be operational by 2016.
· Downtown Streetcar Project [City Clerk]
· Locals Approve Huge Leap Forward For Downtown Streetcar [Curbed LA]