Friday, October 9, 2009

The Boise Streetcar is Not a Done Deal

I've heard from a number of people, including those from downtown areas, who are concerned that the Boise Streetcar that's been covered extensively in the Boise Guardian and somewhat less extensively in the Statesman is a done deal.

This is simply not true. The City of Boise has proposed this project and has applied for stimulus funding from the federal government. This funding is not guaranteed as every community in America can apply for the same pot of money. This funding will also not cover the entire cost of the project either.

As I understand it, the City is proposing a Local Improvement District to fund the remainder, either whole or part. This LID would cover the area surrounding the Trolley Loop and I don't know exactly what the boundaries would be. I cannot imagine that the City Council will just create an LID without public input at a public meeting that is properly noticed.

Before anything can happen on Ada County roads regarding the placement of rails for the streetcar, ACHD will have to give permission. Prior to giving that permission, I have no doubt that we will hold a public hearing, properly noticed for our one evening meeting the fourth Wednesday of the month. I also have no doubt that our well staffed PR department will go all out to publicize the meeting if and when it should occur.

Notice I said if. I cannot fathom a situation where we would have a meeting prior to all the funding being in place, because it would just be a waste of everyone's time. So IF the stimulus funding is awarded to Boise and IF the LID or some other funding mechanism is put into place and IF all the costs of the streetcar are covered and IF there is a design and studies showing what will happen to traffic in the area IF the streetcar is built, THEN ACHD will hold a public hearing and a decision will be made.

So, to reiterate, the Streetcar is not a done deal. There is still a ton of work on it to do.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home