And Now, Your Streetcar Update

Short and sweet this Saturday, as the Transportation and Environment Committee's streetcar update for Monday speaks for itself -- which is to say, budget and time are tight, given, among other things, the constraints of the $23 mil in Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery funds the feds forked over in February. How tight? Deadline to begin revenue service is December 2013, following a cross-your-fingers, hold-your-breath construction start date of March 2012.

But first, there has to be a streetcar plan in place, one that'll "establish a long range streetcar system plan for a 3-mile radius around Downtown Dallas," from Knox-Henderson to Deep Ellum to Uptown to the Cedars and so forth. But who'll pay for that? Ah: "Private investment," among others, just maybe. Says the city's already negotiating with a transportation planner and hopes to wrap that up this month; requests for financial planners' bids go out next month. But then, how to work all this together with Complete Streets (kicks off in January!) and the Dallas Bike Plan (a final public meeting's now on the books for next month)? Forward, Dallas, indeed.

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