Thursday, August 22, 2013

Oklahoma City panel chooses streetcar route

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A recommended route for a 4.6-mile downtown streetcar route has been selected by an Oklahoma City advisory panel, with the proposal advancing to a full citizens advisory board and the City Council for review. Approval from both bodies is expected.

Advisory panel Chair Nathaniel Harding told local media the decision, made Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013, means work can now begin "in earnest."

The recommended route links MidTown with the central business district, the Chesapeake Energy Arena, and Cox Convention Center. The route includes a station stop at the city's Art Deco Santa Fe Depot (photo above), served by Amtrak's Heartland Flyer.

The northern portion of the route is still subject to some adjustment and some options remain, pending additional engineering studies.

Oklahoma City voters approved the streetcar plan and other transport improvements in 2009 as part of MAPS 3, a plan that includes a one-cent sales tax for funding.