Six streetcars to be purchased for Detroit project

Posted on July 17, 2013

A rendering of Detroit's M-1 Rail streetcar.
A rendering of Detroit's M-1 Rail streetcar.
M-1 Rail officials presented at the Downtown Detroit Partnership’s Summer Stakeholder Meeting, telling the crowd their goal is to minimize the impact the construction of the 3.3-mile streetcar circulator has on businesses, residents, pedestrians and visitors of the Woodward Avenue corridor.

With construction scheduled to begin by late summer/early fall of this year, M-1 Rail’s chief operating officer Paul Childs along with director of governmental and community affairs Sommer Woods presented some of their planning details to the people who attended the meeting at the Compuware Building.

“We have had some very good stakeholder meetings over the last several months, but today’s was very productive,” said Woods. “Our team was able to provide updates on key topics that are important to greater downtown businesses and institutions. Today’s meeting also brought to light some questions we still need to answer as we work to finalize our plans for construction.”

Some highlights:

Maps, Streetcars and Stations

As a part of their 30-minute presentation, officials with M-1 Rail tried to help those in attendance envision Woodward Avenue with a streetcar by showing documentation from the supplemental environmental assessment, illustrative renderings of the stations and a sample rendering of the type of streetcar that likely will be used.

Along with showing a picture of a sample streetcar, M-1 Rail officials said six ADA-compliant streetcars that meet the Buy-America standards are going to be purchased; and they are still exploring whether Detroit’s streetcar will be on-wire or off-wire.

Segment 1 Construction

Construction for the streetcar line will occur in two segments with the first segment — Larned to Adams — scheduled to break ground this year. The presentation helped to begin to set expectations. M-1 Rail team members explained construction includes track construction, utility relocations and station platforms.

They also discussed the tentative construction schedule, the impact it will have on businesses and the traffic management strategy, which includes bus routes, street closures, supply deliveries for businesses and parking.

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