Talk of a streetcar system connecting Brooklyn and Queens has been in the air for years — the subway is Manhattan-centric, and Citi Bike isn’t optimal when you’re trying to get from Red Hook to Long Island City.
To reignite interest in the plan for a streetcar running along the waterfront from Sunset Park to Astoria, a booster group called Friends of the Brooklyn-Queens Connector have released glossy new renderings of our possible streetcar-filled future.
Would you ride?
The cost of the 17-mile streetcar system would come to $1.7 billion, according to a detailed proposal cited by the Daily News. That’s nearly three times the amount of one cost estimate in 2014.
Roughly $26 million is estimated for annual operations of the streetcar. But the system is expected to bring in $3.7 billion in tax revenue, according to the Daily News — not to mention the value it could bring to transit-starved areas.
Friends of the Brooklyn-Queens Connector boasts a number of wealthy and well-connected members including Doug Steiner of Steiner Studios, Union Square Ventures’ Fred Wilson, and Durst Organizations’ Helena Durst, reported the Daily News.
Along with the renderings and financial numbers, the group also released a study of potential ridership, concluding that the streetcars would carry roughly 15.8 million people annually by 2035.
This particular waterfront route was first concocted more than a decade ago by urban planner Alex Garvin. But streetcar enthusiast and Midwood resident Arthur Melnick has been pushing this idea for many years, particularly for the waterfront areas of Red Hook and Brooklyn Heights.
[Source: Daily News]