Project officials said City Council approval, offered unanimously, could allow work to begin as early as next month, according to local media. Revenue service is targeted to begin in late 2016.
"M-1 Rail will play a major role in shaping a better future for Detroit," said project President and CEO Matthew Cullen in a statement. "This world-class rail system will serve Detroit's largest job centers and most visited destinations. It will ignite tremendous new economic development and job creation and will provide a foundation for improved and expanded public transit throughout the region. The project will also create construction and permanent jobs for Detroiters. It's time to make history."
The project is expected to name a streetcar builder shortly, with two companies reportedly the final competitors for the business.
Earlier this month project supporters, including CEO Cullen, stated that a projected $12 million funding gap would not deter continued planning for the line.