LB Council takes on Streetcar study, feasibility review
2009-11-10 · By Editor
On Tuesday, November 17, 3:30 p.m., City Council Members will receive a presentation and review a limited feasibility study on how streetcar service could integrate with the public transportation system already in place in Long Beach. The study was prepared by Henningson, Durham & Richardson, Inc. (HDR), in partnership with the Department of Public Works.
In May 2007, Councilmember Suja Lowenthal authored a motion requesting a study to determine the estimated cost of and funding sources for a streetcar service with linkages from downtown to vital points of interest in Long Beach that may include CSULB, LBCC, East Village Arts District, Bixby Knolls, Belmont Shore, Long Beach Memorial, St. Mary’s Hospital and the City’s small business corridors.
As part of Lowenthal’s motion, the City would examine ways the streetcars could complement other transportation options offered by Long Beach Transit; provide a green transportation alternative for moving people between City landmarks; determine the physical and financial viability of establishing a streetcar line; fit the scale and traffic patterns of existing neighborhoods; and reduce short inner-city auto trips, parking demand and traffic congestion.
In terms of her interest in this idea, Lowenthal said, “Street car systems are part of a growing urban renewal trend focused on bringing more homeowners, tourists and private business investment into downtown and its arterials — so it’s an economic engine. They reduce traffic congestion, ease parking, and entice riders who wouldn’t normally use public transportation. They are a catalyst for change and helping communities maximize their public/private investment.”