Detroit Light Rail project (M-1, Q-Line)

General discussion of passenger rail proposals and systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.

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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby Passenger » Tue Jan 10, 2012 9:58 am

Also, buses are easier to sell off when the town goes bankrupt.
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby Detroit » Tue Jun 05, 2012 1:35 am

Detroit Free Press excerpts: Feds not sold on Woodward light-rail project
June 5, 2012
http://www.freep.com/article/20120605/N ... |FRONTPAGE

Though they didn't say as much publicly, some of the city's most powerful business leaders hoped President Barack Obama's transportation chief would visit Detroit on Monday with funding in hand for the $137-million M-1 Rail proposal to run streetcars on Woodward from downtown to the New Center area.

Instead, U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood told backers of the project, assembled at Mayor Dave Bing's conference room, that the feds want more assurances about the long-term viability of the rail line before committing $40 million in federal grants and tax credits needed to move the project forward.

LaHood and Federal Transit Administrator Peter Rogoff gave M-1 Rail 60 days to answer federal concerns about the price of the project and how it will be managed after its first decade of operation.
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby Detroit » Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:03 am

It is most unlikely that Detroit's suburbs will ever pony up for a regional transit authority. SMART (the suburban bus system, which only serves those suburbs that opted in--many opted out) already this year wiped out entire routes and severely reduced hours and days of service on its remaining routes.

My commonly held opinion precedes the excerpts (below) from the today's Detroit Free Press...

Detroit Free Press excerpts: Detroit light rail won't get U.S. funding -- yet
June 20, 2012

... LaHood's letter to the investment group behind the $137-million, 3.3-mile line calling for "a credible plan" for covering operational costs -- suggesting its 1,200-page initial proposal didn't measure up.

LaHood also called for "considerable progress" on the creation of a regional transportation authority that would eventually operate the line -- even though repeated attempts over the last half-century to create such a group have failed amid squabbling over service and costs.
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby lpetrich » Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:29 pm

Ray LaHood on M1 rail: 'They’ve done everything we’ve asked them to do' | Auto news | Detroit Free Press | freep.com
U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood this morning praised Detroit leaders and Michigan lawmakers for creating a regional transit authority and raising funds to build a 3.3-mile light-rail project along the city’s Woodward Avenue corridor.

He is expected to return Friday and to officially deliver $25 million.

Looks like that project might go ahead after all.
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby Passenger » Wed Jan 16, 2013 2:05 pm

How much rail transport does $25 million buy these days?
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby The EGE » Wed Jan 16, 2013 3:11 pm

Passenger wrote:How much rail transport does $25 million buy these days?


About 2 miles, give or take, of street-running light rail (based on figures of 10-15 million per mile from recent systems like Portland).
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby mtuandrew » Wed Jan 16, 2013 9:17 pm

The EGE wrote:
Passenger wrote:How much rail transport does $25 million buy these days?


About 2 miles, give or take, of street-running light rail (based on figures of 10-15 million per mile from recent systems like Portland).

It would be interesting to see how that figure varies in Detroit. The cost of labor, land, and probably construction materials is fairly low in southeast Michigan, but there is no electrical or physical infrastructure for light rail in place.
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby jpasson » Wed Jan 16, 2013 9:40 pm

Was a subway ever proposed for detroit in its history
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby Passenger » Fri Jan 18, 2013 3:45 pm

jpasson wrote:Was a subway ever proposed for detroit in its history


Apparently not anything serious.

http://www.detroittransithistory.info/index.html

Plenty of streetcars in the past.
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby Detroit » Sun Jan 20, 2013 2:18 am

Passenger wrote:How much rail transport does $25 million buy these days?

The 3.4-mile streetcar route's capital cost estimate for the downtown run on Woodward is now pegged at $137 million. [I reckon that does not include the typical 40% cost overrun. Time will tell...]

The $25 million is what LaHood coughed up for that short run Friday. The rest of the capital costs (in addition to operating costs for ten years) were pledged from private-sector multi-millionaire/billionaire donors, BTW.

Metro Detroit is embracing a publicly-funded BRT plan, instead of rail, for some 110 miles of routes.

No rail... Funding for the other light-rail project in Detroit was rejected some three times by the Feds quite some time ago.
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby Detroit » Sun Jan 20, 2013 12:01 pm

He [Lahood] is expected to return Friday and to officially deliver $25 million.

Looks like that project might go ahead after all.

Actually, that $25 million was originally budgeted and set aside by the Feds well over a year ago--to be spent on studying whether to extend the now-aborted 9.3-mile streetcar project into Southern Oakland County, which very few Oaklanders really wanted anyway, BTW.
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby lpetrich » Mon Apr 22, 2013 10:22 pm

M1 Rail streetcar gets key government clearance; construction will begin this year | Crain's Detroit Business
The Federal Transit Administration has given the M1 Rail streetcar project its required environmental clearance to build the $137 million, 3.3-mile loop on Detroit's Woodward Avenue, the project's organizers said today. ...

M1 said it expects to begin construction south of Adams Street this year, and construction north of Adams will begin in 2014.
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby lpetrich » Tue Aug 20, 2013 8:12 am

Detroit streetcar construction contract awarded - Railway Gazette
Groundbreaking should happen in the next few months, and it should open in late 2015.
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby Passenger » Wed Aug 21, 2013 12:07 pm

lpetrich wrote:Detroit streetcar construction contract awarded - Railway Gazette
Groundbreaking should happen in the next few months, and it should open in late 2015.


Should be ready around the same time the population goes down to zero.
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Re: Detroit light-rail project rejected by Feds - Revived?

Postby lpetrich » Mon Jul 28, 2014 10:33 am

M-1 Rail construction kicks off on Woodward | Detroit Free Press | freep.com It should be done in late 2016.

The streetcar project's home page: M-1 RAIL | Woodward Avenue Streetcar Project in Detroit It will run from Hart Plaza near the Detroit River to Chandler St. near the New Center, about 3 miles. Mayor Mike Duggan:
“This is a start,” Duggan said. “We ultimately need to build this rail line not just to Grand Boulevard but out to Eight Mile and out to Pontiac. But for today this is a very exciting beginning.”

From downtown Detroit in Woodward Ave., it's 9 mi to Eight Mile Rd. and 25 mi to the center of Pontiac. That may be a bit far for a modern streetcar, but it may be OK for a longer-range LRV.

Detroit already has an urban-rail system: an elevated light-rail system in the downtown area, The Detroit People Mover The trains run in one direction in a loop of single track. It was built in 1987, and intended to be the downtown circulator of a longer-range urban-rail system. But that did not happen for nearly 30 years.

The M-1 will stop not only near there, but also near Detroit's Amtrak station, not far from Chandler St. That may provide some impetus for developing a commuter-rail line, a line which will likely stop there also.
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