Is the Streetcar Just a Fad or Solution for our City’s Transportation Needs?
Seattle’s population is growing exponentially, a colleague of mine recently sold his car to conserve oil, architects are required to meet certain environmental requirements, and the Metro has been reporting delays in their schedules due to overcrowded buses. However, councilman Richard McIver was quoted in the Seattle P.I. saying, “I’m still not convinced that streetcars aren’t just a fad. McIver went even further to say that he would rather have money spent on Mercer Street.
Although the additional 4 lines proposed for Seattle’s streetcar equates to an estimated $599 million, the P.I. also reported that there would be an estimated 10.7 million riders per year. At $1.50 a pop, that would equal roughly $84 million in revenue each year. At that rate, the additional lines would have paid for themselves within 7 years. The P.I. didn’t report an estimate for how many riders would ride the First Hill/Capitol Hill line, so the numbers above should even yield a faster pay-off.Email