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  1. #1
    Junior sirthought's Avatar
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    Streetcar milestone set for Friday

    I understand why this was such a hotly debated move in Cincinnati but I, for one, am glad phase 1 of the streetcar is closer to completion. There is still a lot that has to happen to prove it was the right action, but evidence is showing it already being the correct step. The city just reported a budget surplus. Surely this is a positive sign that the tax base is growing and that money will be put to some use to help businesses and residents.

    Operation won't begin for another year, but we've already seen an extreme turn around in our urban core. Just in anticipation of it's arrival, more apartments and condos are in demand, development is up, and some key business is moving into the city versus away from it.

    People want better transportation amenities downtown and Over the Rhine and they're excited it's coming.

    Personally, I was not in favor of this streetcar plan at the beginning. I wish for a full-on subway and regional light rail. Express rail to other metro areas! If you need to commit so much money to something, why not scale for greater regional impact.

    But once the plan was in place, voters spoke their mind about the project—multiple times—I knew it was silly to fight it and the nay sayers needed to get onboard and make this thing work.

    The fact that the effort, originally meant for downtown, OTR, and Clifton, was going to serve the two largest areas of employment in the region, made this plan work for me. Public transit with trains is essential, so let's get started somewhere it will make a change by reducing some traffic issues and allow more folks to live in that area with convenience.

    From the Enquirer. http://www.cincinnati.com/story/news...iday/73882086/

    Cincinnati's streetcar project is expected to reach a major milestone this week when the final piece of rail is welded into Downtown streets.

    The 3.6-mile track through Downtown and Over-the-Rhine is scheduled to be completed on Friday afternoon, project leader John Deatrick said Tuesday. Crews plan to weld the last piece of rail at Second and Main streets near Great American Ball Park. leaving only a handful of smaller projects before the entire construction phase is completed.
    Barring unexpected problems, construction will come in on time and on budget after nearly 2˝ years of work – keeping the $148 million streetcar on track to open to passengers in September 2016. That's no small task after streetcar project leaders faced several obstacles: hostile political debates, intense media scrutiny, a poorly planned budget by ex-Mayor Mark Mallory's administration and brutal winter weather.
    So many on this board said OTR and downtown would not change. That the Washington Park project was a mistake. That no one wants to be downtown. Evidence is proving you wrong.

    And then we heard arguments that the development would be happening with or without the streetcar. We're still hearing stories on a monthly basis of business owners pushing to be closer to the streetcar line, and how the streetcar is part of their motivation for wanting to build a business in the core. Also, all of the business coming to Over the Rhine: New Restaurants and Bars Join the OTR Crowd

    As anyone traveling north on Vine from Downtown can easily see, Over-the-Rhine is the hot spot for new restaurants and bars. And since we last published a round up of new and planned OTR eateries and drinkeries, the pace has only picked up.
    Public transportation isn't cheap and likely won't pay for itself, but neither does transportation with automobiles and planes. Roads, highways, airports are all highly subsidized. Trains will at least help to reduce traffic and pollution, save some space, and invigorate some areas that were in need of a jolt.

    I promote some events on Fountain Square, Washington Park, and OTR in the warmer months. These events, mostly free to attend, have had a major economic impact over the long term. This city needs simple and effective transportation to make a steady stream of events easy to want to participate in. It raises our quality of life and attracts an educated workforce, leading to more companies and jobs.

    Let's keep working for better transit, build up our urban neighborhoods, reduce crime, raise our economy, and make Cincinnati a community we all enjoy living in.

    This Friday at 2 p.m. please join your neighbors at the corner of Main and 2nd Street near Crave Restaurant at The Banks to commemorate the finishing of the first track.

  2. #2
    Supporting Member bobbiemcgee's Avatar
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    I do love the Light Rail in Denver. 88k daily riders and you'll be able to hop on it inside the Airport starting next year, which should double the ridership overnight.
    This space for rent.

  3. #3
    Supporting Member XU 87's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sirthought View Post
    I understand why this was such a hotly debated move in Cincinnati but I, for one, am glad phase 1 of the streetcar is closer to completion. There is still a lot that has to happen to prove it was the right action, but evidence is showing it already being the correct step. The city just reported a budget surplus. Surely this is a positive sign that the tax base is growing and that money will be put to some use to help businesses and residents.



    And then we heard arguments that the development would be happening with or without the streetcar. We're still hearing stories on a monthly basis of business owners pushing to be closer to the streetcar line, and how the streetcar is part of their motivation for wanting to build a business in the core. Also, all of the business coming to Over the Rhine: New Restaurants and Bars Join the OTR Crowd


    Are you claiming that the streetcar has something to do with the city budget surplus?

    OTR got going long before the streetcar. In the article you cited, there is no mention of those businesses coming to OTR because of the streetcar.

  4. #4
    Supporting Member chico's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by XU 87 View Post
    OTR got going long before the streetcar. In the article you cited, there is no mention of those businesses coming to OTR because of the streetcar.
    That was my recollection of the discussion on here. It wasn't that people didn't think OTR was going to come back - like 87 said, it's been on the way back for a while. It's the thought that the streetcar had something to do with the development in OTR that people took issue with. I'm sure the businesses like to have the streetcar but I think you'll be hard pressed to find one where the streetcar was the primary reason to locate there. My guess is that if there was no streetcar you'd still see the development you're seeing.

  5. #5
    Supporting Member XU 87's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chico View Post
    That was my recollection of the discussion on here. It wasn't that people didn't think OTR was going to come back - like 87 said, it's been on the way back for a while. It's the thought that the streetcar had something to do with the development in OTR that people took issue with. I'm sure the businesses like to have the streetcar but I think you'll be hard pressed to find one where the streetcar was the primary reason to locate there. My guess is that if there was no streetcar you'd still see the development you're seeing.
    It wasn't even finalized that the streetcar would be built until the end of 2013. We have a mayor who ran against the streetcar. In fact, the only reason we have the streetcar is because two councilmen switched their positions on the streetcar after the election.

    I was involved in some extensive litigation over a large piece of property in OTR that is right on the streetcar line. The property was purchased in late 2008. There was absolutely no mention whatsoever in the buyer's due diligence report prior to purchase about the streetcar being built.
    Last edited by XU 87; 10-14-2015 at 06:12 PM.

  6. #6
    Junior sirthought's Avatar
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    I speak with newer businesses in Over the Rhine every week. You'd be hard pressed to find any business in that whole area that wouldn't cite the streetcar as a key reason for wanting to be there. Those restaurants aren't moving to OTR because of the cheap rents. Articles in the Business Courier frequently list the streetcar as part of the whole marketplace that these business owners are interested in because it helps their workforce and their customers. It's pushing growth. Executives at G.E. said it was a key part of the reasons that attracted them to move downtown.

    No business owner would choose a location based on one sole thing, but this amenity is attracting significant activity. Just the promise of a streetcar is not sole thing turning the neighborhood around. But it's really a rallying point for so many other reasons to want to rebuild that area when it was neglected for too long.

    And yes, I am implying that the streetcar is a factor of major development, residential growth, and therefore increased tax revenue. It's no coincidence. Development has happened long before 2013 that was in anticipation of the streetcar being built.

    Flynn and Mann switched their positions because Cranley is an idiot and they didn't want to painted with the same brush. It was wrong to hold up the project at that stage in the first place. Plus, hundreds of residents, business owners, and concerned individuals were lobbying them not to try to end it further. There would have been needless lawsuits. It's not what people voting on the streetcar wanted. But that's all old news. The final weld on phase one happens Friday.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by sirthought View Post
    I speak with newer businesses in Over the Rhine every week. You'd be hard pressed to find any business in that whole area that wouldn't cite the streetcar as a key reason for wanting to be there. Those restaurants aren't moving to OTR because of the cheap rents. Articles in the Business Courier frequently list the streetcar as part of the whole marketplace that these business owners are interested in because it helps their workforce and their customers. It's pushing growth. Executives at G.E. said it was a key part of the reasons that attracted them to move downtown.

    No business owner would choose a location based on one sole thing, but this amenity is attracting significant activity. Just the promise of a streetcar is not sole thing turning the neighborhood around. But it's really a rallying point for so many other reasons to want to rebuild that area when it was neglected for too long.

    And yes, I am implying that the streetcar is a factor of major development, residential growth, and therefore increased tax revenue. It's no coincidence. Development has happened long before 2013 that was in anticipation of the streetcar being built.

    Flynn and Mann switched their positions because Cranley is an idiot and they didn't want to painted with the same brush. It was wrong to hold up the project at that stage in the first place. Plus, hundreds of residents, business owners, and concerned individuals were lobbying them not to try to end it further. There would have been needless lawsuits. It's not what people voting on the streetcar wanted. But that's all old news. The final weld on phase one happens Friday.
    Other than maybe one waffle stand, the streetcar did not spur any of the development in OTR that has taken place over the past 5 years or the next 5 years.

    Also, just so you know. I am willing to bet that a third to half of the existing new restaurants are gone within 5 years. People love new places but it wears off.

  8. #8
    Supporting Member fellahmuskie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by _LH View Post
    Other than maybe one waffle stand, the streetcar did not spur any of the development in OTR that has taken place over the past 5 years or the next 5 years.

    Also, just so you know. I am willing to bet that a third to half of the existing new restaurants are gone within 5 years. People love new places but it wears off.
    I'll bet a third of the restaurants are gone within 5 years, too. That's what happens to restaurants. I'd also bet there will be twice as many to replace them.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by fellahmuskie View Post
    I'll bet a third of the restaurants are gone within 5 years, too. That's what happens to restaurants. I'd also bet there will be twice as many to replace them.
    Maybe and then they will also close. There are simply not enough people living in Cincinnati to sustain all of these "entertainment pockets" at the same time. One pops up and slowly kills off an older one and so on and so on.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by _LH View Post
    Maybe and then they will also close. There are simply not enough people living in Cincinnati to sustain all of these "entertainment pockets" at the same time. One pops up and slowly kills off an older one and so on and so on.
    true story....that's great that over the rhine "is revitalized." Even though it is still a sketchy part of town....newsflash just because you pretty something up doesn't mean that the people who are shooting each other just leave.

    Anyways...it is nice that over the rhine is the new cool place to hang out and eat and drink etc, but now Mt. Adams is basically a ghost town....all that is happened is that some money got moved around from one area of the city to the other.

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