Monday, September 10, 2012

Portland streetcar expansion nears opening

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The Portland Streetcar will expand service into the city's east side Saturday, Sept. 22, bringing streetcar service east of the Willamette River. The system will become a two-line service at that time.

Dubbed the Central Loop, the new line will mark its opening with a press event at OMSI Plaza in Southeast Portland; passenger service will begin at 11:00 a.m., with free access throughout the weekend, according to the Portland Streetcar website. The Centra

The Central Loop will connect with the existing streetcar line (North-South Line) on 10th & 11th in downtown Portland. From there it will cross the Broadway Bridge traveling along Broadway, Weidler, 7th, MLK and Grand connecting to the Rose Quarter, Lloyd District, Oregon Convention Center, the Central Eastside Industrial District, and the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI).

"This is the first streetcar project in the country to be funded with a Federal Grant and includes new vehicles made by United Streetcar located in Clackamas, Ore.," the website notes..

The first 3.9-mile segment of the Portland Streetcar debuted in 2001. The system intersects with Portland's MAX light rail transit service.