Q: How is a streetcar different from light rail?
A: Streetcars share the road with automobile traffic. They are intended to serve as a local “pedestrian accelerator,” as opposed to moving people long distances, so the stops are much more frequent – as close as 1000 feet apart. Because they do not require a dedicated lane, the impact on traffic is less and the cost to install is less.
Q: How much would GARP cost?
A: Streetcar projects typically cost between $15 million to $30 million per mile, depending on how many modifications are needed to utilities, grades, etc. As a comparison, light rail costs $40 million per mile and up. If the whole 7 miles of GARP were constructed, it would cost about $140 million; however the project could be phased and a meaningful and useful line could cost as little as $20 million.
Q: I like the concept, but could you extend the route to reach _______?
A: The concept plan being presented is just that: a preliminary concept. Before it becomes a reality, studies will need to be done to establish the feasibility of the exact routing, and if it would have a greater benefit if it were taking a different route.
Q: Why doesn’t the concept show a complete circle around downtown?
A: The project is more feasible to construct if there are fewer crossings of the existing light rail line. To have the line come full circle, there would be two more crossing points at Washington & Jefferson, and the practical functionality of the system would not be enhanced very much.
The Grand Avenue Rail Project - Phoenix, Arizona
(c) 2013 Motley Design Group LLCC