Central Business District

Streetcar Weekly Update: November 11, 2013

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For the week of November 11, 2013, the streetcar will continue installation of rail and proceed with track construction near Findlay Market. The Maintenance & Operations Facility site will begin a two-week process of installing new sewers as backfilling nears completion. As part of the city’s construction contract, the project is also involved with repairing public utilities. Here’s what to expect:

  • Rail delivery and installation will continue on Elm Street, between 15th and Wade streets.
  • Concrete base work for the track will continue on Elm Street, between 12th and Wade streets.
  • Existing pavement removal will start on Elm Street, between Wade and Green streets.
  • Backfilling for the Maintenance & Operations Facility will continue at Henry & Race streets.
  • Storm sewer work will continue in the Maintenance & Operations Facility site; and on Race Street near Findlay Street.
  • Replacement of granite pavers will continue on Elm Street, in front of Music Hall.
  • The Elm Street entrance to Washington Park Garage will be open again.

 

PUBLIC UTILITY IMPROVEMENTS AS PART OF STREETCAR CONSTRUCTION:

  • New sewer installation will continue on Elm Street, near Elder and Findlay streets; and on Race Street, between Central Parkway and 13th Street.
  • Sewer work will take place on Main Street and 8th Street in the Central Business District and on Henry Street and Race Street in Over-the-Rhine.
  • Water main installation will continue on Walnut Street, between 9th Street and Central Parkway. Work will start further down Walnut, between 7th and 9th streets; and on Elm, near Elder and Findlay.
  • Conduit installation for traffic signals (tubing for electrical wires) will resume on Race Street, near Elder and Green streets.
  • Underground gas work will be performed by Duke Energy on Main Street near 4th Street; on Race Street near Findlay Street; and on Race Street, between Liberty and Green streets.
  • Telecomm work will occur on Elm Street, from Green to Wade streets; on Race Street, between 14th and 15th streets; on Race at Green; and on Race Street near Central Parkway.
  • Exploratory digging for utilities will start on 2nd Street, between Main and Walnut streets.

Streetcar Weekly Update: November 4, 2013

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For the week of November 4, 2013, the streetcar will have of a lot of highly visible progress on both the trackwork and at the Maintenance & Operations Facility site. As part of the city’s construction contract, the project is also involved with repairing public utilities. Here’s what to expect:

  • Rail delivery and installation will start on Elm Street between 14th and 15th streets.
  • Concrete base work for the track will continue on Elm Street between 12th and Wade streets.
  • Replacement of the cobblestones will take place on the east half of Elm Street.
  • Storm sewer installation, backfilling, and pavement removal for the Maintenance & Operations Facility will continue at Henry and Race streets.

 

PUBLIC UTILITY IMPROVEMENTS AS PART OF STREETCAR CONSTRUCTION:

  • Underground gas work will be conducted by Duke Energy on Race Street between Liberty and Green streets; on Walnut Street near 3rd Street; and on Main Street near 4th Street.
  • Storm sewer work will begin on Race Street near Findlay Street.
  • Water main installation will continue on Walnut Street between 9th Street and Central Parkway.
  • Traffic control conduit (tubing for electrical wires) installation will continue on Elm Street between Wade and Green streets; and on Race Street near Findlay Street.
  • Telecommunications work will occur on Elm Street between Wade and Green streets; on Race Street between 15th and Liberty streets; and on Walnut Street near 6th Street.

Community of 75+ Bikes the Streetcar Route

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Over 75 people turned out for a 3.6-mile bike ride along the Cincinnati Streetcar route held last week. Margy and Mel Ride Bikes, a community group of leisure bicyclers, organized the ridealong tour which started at Findlay Market. Social media and word-of-mouth attracted the large number of participants, who ranged from streetcar supporters to those who knew little about the route and were curious to see where it would go.

Led by Sarah Perrino, City of Cincinnati Transportation Designer, and Chris Eilerman, Streetcar Project Manager, the tour showcased an up-close look at the construction progress and discussed the milestones for completion. Cyclists rang their bells at each of the stops to indicate where the streetcar will pick up future passengers. Queen City Bike was also on hand to provide safety demonstrations on how to ride carefully during construction, and how to ride a bike on a street with rails in the ground. Traveling the entire loop took around 90 minutes.

Cincinnati’s streetcars will have room to hold six bicycles per vehicle, which can easily be wheeled on board with curb-level boarding. In contrast, a METRO bus only holds two bicycles per vehicle, which must be hoisted and secured on the exterior rack without any assistance from the bus driver. Children’s bikes are too small to fit in the rack, and bikes are not permitted inside the bus. If the rack is full, you must wait for another bus.

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Departing from Findlay Market, bicyclers traveled north along Elm Street, passing the Maintenance and Operations Facility construction on Henry Street, then rode south on Race Street through Over-the-Rhine. Crossing Central Parkway, the route continues south into the Central Business District on Walnut Street, looping around at The Banks and back north on Main Street. Returning to Over-the-Rhine, the tour rode along 12th Street to Elm Street, then back to Findlay Market. Afterwards, the cyclists convened at Rhinegeist, a brewery that opened on the route this summer inside the historic Christian Moerlein Brewery.

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Let’s Grow: Streetcars and Your Neighborhood

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A frequently asked question about the Cincinnati streetcar is, “When is it coming to my neighborhood?”

Currently, the City of Cincinnati is focused on building the current 3.6 mile loop around the Central Business District and Over-The-Rhine, where the most employers and revenue-generating entertainment is located. The next phase of the streetcar is expected to travel north on Vine Street to Uptown, Corryville, and Clifton.

But then where will it go?

It’s hard to say, as the City of Cincinnati is only 30% into its research on planning the Uptown phase. In the meantime, a University of Cincinnati student earning his Masters of Architecture outlined a longer streetcar route for an academic project. The design for this theoretical streetcar route is based on the current streetcar route, the 2002 Metro Moves light rail initiative developed by the Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority, and the 2030 Regional Transportation Plan unanimously adopted in 2008 by the OKI Regional Council of Governments.

The light green route represents the streetcar line, and its possibility to expand outward to such neighborhoods as Westwood, Price Hill, and Camp Washington on the west side, northward to Avondale and Northside, and encompass Walnut Hills, Oakley, and Columbia-Tusculum on the east side. The academic project, entitled Metro|Cincinnati, also includes route projections for commuter rail, heavy rail (such as a subway), and extensions into Northern Kentucky.

Metro|Cincinnati map

While it will be up to the city to chart the course of the streetcar to its next neighborhood, it’s likely that it will be one or more of the communities highlighted on the Metro|Cincinnati map.