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Kansas City Streetcar Plan Moving Forward

Portland TriMetro

It will cost about $1 million per mile to lay groundwork for a Kansas City streetcar line, and the city is moving forward on expanding a startup. The original has yet to be built. 

The City Council may decide before the week ends whether to borrow $10 million to start moving on phase-two of the streetcar system.

The city would borrow for engineering work to get what may be a $400 million added streetcar line.

Next week planners should be able to give recommendations on where the eight to 10 mile stretch would go.

Council Members on the Finance Committee have sent the measure to the full council for consideration Thursday.

Spearheading the streetcar effort, Councilman Russ Johnson said this preliminary work has to be done if there’s hope for federal help and local funding needs to be set up first.

“They have been burned too many times. And they basically just don’t do that anymore,” said Johnson. 

According to Johnson, federal transportation officials took a hard lesson.

“They gave Fort Worth $25 million to build a streetcar system and Fort Worth said ‘thanks but no thanks’ and they gave it back,” he said.

A decision about which corridor should run the next streetcar line will be made in April.

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