Streetcar Could Bring Us Two New Bridges, Less Car Parking, More Ped and Bike Paths

A rendering of the streetcar traversing the Pulaski Bridge. Rendering via the Brooklyn Paper


    Mayor de Blasio’s ambitious new Brooklyn-Queens streetcar proposal could transform outer-borough transportation in even more ways than previously revealed.

    What’s new: The proposed route will probably require the construction of two new bridges in Brooklyn. It could also bring more pedestrian and bike paths to the borough — as well as less street parking, officials announced.

    But don’t worry about the no-doubt pricey cost of constructing two new bridges. The cost has already been factored into the streetcar’s projected $2.5 billion budget, according to the New York Times.

    Here are all the deets:

    • One of the bridges would run over the Gowanus Canal. The other one would cross into Queens.
    • New bridges would be needed because the existing Hamilton Avenue bridge and the Pulaski Bridge will likely not be able to carry streetcars. (In case you are wondering, the Hamilton Avenue bridge crosses over the Gowanus; the Pulaski spans Newtown Creek and connects Greenpoint with Long Island City.)
    • The new bridges could include paths for pedestrians and bikes.
    • Hundreds of street parking spaces could be lost to make way for the streetcar.
    Brooklyn-Queens Streetcar

    The Gowanus Canal’s Hamilton Avenue Bridge being raised. Photo via Toxi City

    As we’ve reported, the proposed streetcar route would knit together hard-to-reach communities along the Brooklyn waterfront, including Sunset Park and Red Hook. It would also connect them with Queens.

    Some critics have said buses would be just as efficient and easier to implement. Others think a dedicated route has potential.

    This is one of several recent attempts to improve transportation in our ever-growing borough. Other growing cities have also turned back to streetcars and bike lanes to ease road traffic.

    What do you think of these new details?

    [Source: NYT]

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