Friday, December 3, 2010

Fort Worth Streetcar Continued...

Here is an excellent letter to the Editor's at the newspaper.  Since you won't see it in the "news", you'll see it here. 

Reporters should exercise some intelligence instead of just reporting information.

Today's story on the streetcar meeting said that 2,000 riders per day could be expected on the route from LaGrave Field to Harris Hospital .

Did the reporter ever study math?

2000 riders x 365 days = 730,000 riders a year.

Suppose the fare is $1 a person. That comes to $730,000 a year income from fares. Does that compute as a good business deal?

The reporter should have asked...How will that amount pay for the multi-million dollar investment? If it will not, where will the extra funds come from? The obvious answer is perpetual taxpayer subsidy for the benefit of some "unknown developers" who "may" do developments along the route "IF it is built". Drive the route. There is no room for development except 8 blocks along North Main . Studies have shown that people will walk no more than 2 or 3 blocks to ride public transit (streetcar OR bus). How much development can occur in a 32 block area (both sides of North Main) that makes such a subsidy practical? Will lack of streetcars HALT development? With their greater flexibility, why can't buses serve the area much better? I know the public relations business. Have you asked who is the p.r. agent for this project?It has the signs of being a well-orchestrated PR presentation.

PS. I have a friend who is close to City Hall. He says it is a "done deal" and the rest is just "window dressing". A good investigation would "follow the money."

PPS. I would run a test. For one year run FREE buses along the proposed route. (Free, to offset the inconvenience of not having trolleys) Same schedule and stops as the proposed streetcar route. See if the free buses attract 730,000 riders.  Fair test?

PPPS. Public transit depends on HIGH DENSITY POPULATION.
Fort Worth has NO high density population.

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