News and stories by Rhonda Bell

Rhonda Bell

Urban Design and Landscape Architecture Senior Associate, RNL

Looking Ahead: The Future of Streetcars

Looking Ahead: The Future of Streetcars

January 17, 2018

Over the last few months, we’ve talked about the resurgence of streetcars and explored recently completed projects across the country. So what’s next for modern streetcars? A number of expansions of existing systems are in various stages of planning and development ...

Designing for the transit user experience: Enhancing safety and security at stations

Designing for the transit user experience: Enhancing safety and security at stations

October 11, 2017

By paying attention to how it feels to arrive at, pass through, and use a transit facility, focused design strategies can complement traditional approaches by enhancing user perception of safety. While a station may be safe, according to statistics and incident reporting, ridership and patron satisfaction will still suffer if the station doesn’t feel safe.

Understanding Streetcar Costs, Funding, Operations and Partnerships

Understanding Streetcar Costs, Funding, Operations and Partnerships

August 2, 2017

On a per-mile, capital cost basis, streetcar systems typically cost more than bus systems, but less than light rail (LRT). One of the biggest contributors to this difference is right-of-way: streetcars and buses typically run within an existing roadway and thus require minimal property acquisition...

The Evolution of Streetcar Technology

The Evolution of Streetcar Technology

May 30, 2017

While streetcars may seem like an old fashioned or nostalgic mode of transportation, today’s streetcar is far from your grandmother’s trolley. The modern streetcar has evolved in major ways in response to shifts in community needs as well as technological advances.

How Streetcars are Meeting the Needs of Modern Cities

How Streetcars are Meeting the Needs of Modern Cities

April 26, 2017

Perhaps one of the most misunderstood elements of modern streetcars is what they can offer a city, and in particular, what they can offer that other modes of transportation can’t.

How Cities Are Embracing Streetcars Once Again

How Cities Are Embracing Streetcars Once Again

March 22, 2017

The streetcar might seem like a transit method of the past, but look at some of the major metropolitan areas in the U.S. — Portland, Seattle, Salt Lake City, Tucson, Atlanta, Dallas, Washington D.C. and Orange County — and it’s clear that cities are starting to embrace the streetcar once again. While it’s one cog in the wheel of a comprehensive transit system, streetcar systems can act as a boon for economic development, and a powerful tool for revitalizing sagging corridors and attracting the much-sought after talent of a young, hip workforce who choose to reduce, delay, or completely forego car ownership.

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