When the Cincinnati Streetcar was first proposed in 2007, our urban core and its prospects for the future looked very different from how they look. In 2007 construction had still not begun on the Banks, Fountain Square had only been recently been renovated, the Carew Tower was our tallest building, the Gateway Quarter was in its first phase, rail service consisted of one train per night departing for Chicago at 3am, and the only nearby casinos were floating on a river in Indiana.
Times have changed.
Vertical construction has begun on the Banks and hundreds of new residents will be living there when the streetcar opens in 2012.
Fountain Square and the Backstage District have new restaurants and business. Virtually every day of the year you can find people on the Square, the city’s living room, at an event, ice skating, or just enjoying the day.
Queen City Square II has been topped off and is the largest LEED certified building in the region.
The Gateway Quarter is in its fourth phase, bringing new small business and hundreds of residents to vacant buildings in Over-the-Rhine and helping preserve the irreplaceable architecture of the neighborhood.
Passenger rail service will commence in 2012 connecting Cincinnati to Dayton, Columbus, and Cincinnati. If the trains roll into Union Terminal, a short extension of the streetcar will allow travelers to access Uptown and Downtown without ever needing a car.
And a new casino will be built on Broadway Commons, just two blocks away from the line.
There has been tremendous progress in our urban core over the past three years and more will continue in the future. Building the streetcar will connect all of these investment, create new development along the line, and attract new residents for our urban core.
The streetcar will improve Cincinnati not just for our generation, but for the generations of Cincinnatians who will follow us. In the 19th century, we built the Cincinnati Southern Railway which to this day contributes around $20 million per year to our city’s budget.
The past few years have seen a confluence of positive developments that have set Cincinnati on the right track. After years of stagnation we are moving forward, and the Cincinnati Streetcar is another step in the right direction.
Now’s the time to build the streetcar.
Now’s the time to tie together all of the new development in Uptown and Downtown.
Now’s the time to make Cincinnati a better place to live.
Support Cincinnati—Build the Streetcar.