Subscribe Register Login
Monday, July 16, 2018, 5:20 p.m.

ADVERTISEMENT

Top Picks - Capture Arkansas

Can’t afford to move Little Rock streetcar poles for I-30 project, transit agency tells state

By Noel Oman

This article was originally published June 25, 2018 at 4:30 a.m. Updated June 25, 2018 at 5:00 p.m.

the-river-rail-trolley-cruises-down-east-second-street-in-little-rock-on-friday-about-a-dozen-streetcar-poles-mostly-along-east-second-street-will-need-to-be-removed-and-replaced-as-part-of-the-arkansas-department-of-transportations-30-crossing-project-rock-region-metro-has-estimated-the-cost-at-450000

The River Rail Trolley cruises down East Second Street in Little Rock on Friday. About a dozen streetcar poles, mostly along East Second Street, will need to be removed and replaced as part of the Arkansas Department of Transportation’s 30 Crossing project. Rock Region Metro has estimated the cost at $450,000.

A map showing the disputed trolley area.

The latest version of the $631.7 million 30 Crossing project will require Rock Region Metro to relocate 15 catenary poles used on its downtown streetcar system, mostly along a section of East Second Street in Little Rock.

A map showing the disputed trolley area.

This story is only available from the Arkansas Online archives. Stories can be purchased individually for $2.95. Click here to search for this story in the archives.

Print Headline: Project worries transit agency; Can’t afford to move LR streetcar poles, it tells state

ADVERTISEMENT

Comments on: Can’t afford to move Little Rock streetcar poles for I-30 project, transit agency tells state

To report abuse or misuse of this area please hit the "Suggest Removal" link in the comment to alert our online managers. Read our Terms of Use policy.

Subscribe Register Login

You must login to make comments.

Displaying 1 - 10 of 10 total comments

Quackenfuss says... June 25, 2018 at 9:29 a.m.

How about we ditch this carnival ride and build a true intracity rail transit system. Start with a line from downtown to Chenal, then add lines from downtown to SWLR, Sherwood, Jacsonville, Rose City and the Heights. Long range, build intra-city to Conway, Cabot, Pine Bluff and Benton. Unify Metro Little Rock with a real urban transit system. Lay it out as a 25 year plan if you have to. Every city in the United States that has managed true urban growth has built a good, urban rail transit system. It isn't cheap and it isn't quick, but it is a true infrastructure improvement that would pay far more benefits than this "expanded" corridor that is being considered. When paired with a good bus system it is possible for anyone to live in the area without having to depend on a car. I'm not against cars, but it's just that they eventually choke cities.

( | suggest removal )

drs01 says... June 25, 2018 at 10:12 a.m.

Several years ago former MetroPlan director Jim Mckenzie admitted that this yellow trolley was NOT a transportation system, but a tourist attraction. Yet, money was spent on a study/proposal to expand the service south to Roosevelt Road and north to Park Hill. Here again, another attempt to use this trolley to attract business development along the route to the benefit of a small portion of our city.
Ridership is down and no one uses it as a means of transportation. Downtown workers can't use it to reach a lunch HOUR location and still have a job when they are late to return.
This $20 million project plus the yearly operating expenses has benefited only one select group of our citizens......businesses in the downtown metro areas of LR/NLR and the LR/NLR tourist bureaus. So, let's collect the money needed from them, especially the tourist (Advertising/Promotions) bureaus who are fat with cash.
Further more, the expense of changing CATA's name to Rock Region Metro hasn't done much to provide a transportation system for those citizens who need or want to use it.
We can't continue to build roadways that enable our workforce to retreat from the city with their paychecks. We must give them reasons to stay here. Transportation systems, quality school choices, and private sector jobs are three.

( | suggest removal )

Razrbak says... June 25, 2018 at 12:08 p.m.

We can thank last term mayor Mark Stodola for this. This is just the tip of iceberg.

( | suggest removal )

DoubleBlind says... June 25, 2018 at 12:18 p.m.

I completely agree with Quack, but it will never happen. The TD still thinks with it’s ‘Highway Dept’ brain. It can’t fathom - and won’t tolerate - any mode of transport that doesn’t support its lame, lazy and BACKWARD highway-centric agenda.

( | suggest removal )

Libertarian says... June 25, 2018 at 1 p.m.

$857 for each rider of the trolley last year?! What a boondoggle. The city can't keep you from being mugged down town, but we'll subsidize your trolley ride!

What a rip off.

( | suggest removal )

Libertarian says... June 25, 2018 at 1:08 p.m.

Time to pull the plug on this rip off agency. Rock Region Metro had 14 years to become viable and self sufficient.

( | suggest removal )

DoubleBlind says... June 25, 2018 at 1:18 p.m.

Lib - You might consider changing your screen name since you clearly don’t understand what are actual Libertarian ideals. No rinky dink standalone entity outside of the hwy dept - and without hwy dept level funding - was ever going to make a go of actual ‘mass transit,’ regardless of good intentions. Yet you don’t place any similar responsibility on the hwy dept for advancing mass transit and apparently suppport their $650M ‘highway to nowhere’ plan.

( | suggest removal )

hah406 says... June 25, 2018 at 1:47 p.m.

Clearly the streetcar system is a feature aimed at tourists in the downtown area and not much more. That does not make it a bad thing, but it should make us all consider the costs associated with it. Having lived in cities with much more robust public transportation systems (Chicago, Atlanta, Berlin) I would love to see more intra-city and inter-city rail. However, the LR metro area simply does not have enough population density to support it. The metro population would probably need to quadruple to begin to make it cost-effective.

( | suggest removal )

Libertarian says... June 25, 2018 at 5:42 p.m.

Yes, Chris, I am well aware of the Libertarian philosophy, and have been for some decades now. #1 of which is that the businesses that benefit from this boondoggle should be the ones to pay for it. If it is to be a public transit, then they should have created a special tax district to pay for the building and up keep instead of making tens of thousands of citizens who never use it or benefit from it foot the bill. If it were a good idea to begin with, a private entity would have stepped forward and implemented it with private funds. But since it's losing over $850 PER RIDER no one in their right mind would finance it.

What do you do when you have a product no one wants to buy? You get the government to buy it from you.

( | suggest removal )

NoUserName says... June 25, 2018 at 6:15 p.m.

Central Arkansas simply doesn't have the population for worthwhile mass transit. A nice idea, sure. But it would be a complete waste. And that's also true geographically. When it takes 2 hours to go 10 miles in a highly populated city, it makes sense. When I can drive halfway across the state in an hour, umm, no. A rail is NEVER going to be convenient to go from WLR to downtown when in the worst of times it takes 15-20 minutes by car.

( | suggest removal )

  • page
  • 1
Click here to make a comment

To report abuse or misuse of this area please hit the "Suggest Removal" link in the comment to alert our online managers. Read our Terms of Use policy.

ADVERTISEMENT

SHOPPING

loading...

ADVERTISEMENT

Top Picks - Capture Arkansas
Arkansas Online