Wednesday, July 27, 2011From an article by Larry Sanders in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
Milwaukee aldermen voted 10-5 Tuesday to approve a modern streetcar line downtown.
In response to concerns raised by Comptroller W. Martin "Wally" Morics, aldermen agreed to limit spending to engineering for now, and to seek a review by the comptroller's office before releasing money for construction.
The measure now heads to Mayor Tom Barrett, the plan's chief advocate, for his signature.
Plans call for a 2.1-mile line, from the lower east side to the downtown Amtrak-Greyhound station, starting in 2014. Streetcars would run every 10 minutes on weekdays and every 15 minutes on weekends, late-night and early-morning hours.
The $64.6 million project would be funded by $54.9 million in long-idle federal transit aid and $9.7 million from a tax-incremental financing district, with fares, parking fees and advertising revenue covering the $2.65 million annual operating cost. The city is seeking additional federal aid for extensions that would add 1.5 miles to the line and boost the construction cost past $100 million.