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Old December 8th, 2013, 01:29 AM   #101
Hot Rod
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weava View Post
Since they already ordered the streetcars, are they still getting built? I know my city(kansas city) piggy backed on Cincy's order to get a better price and I am wondering how this cancelled project will effect us. Will Cincy just sell their cars to another city? Will KC buy the extra cars at a discounted rate for their future lines?
So sorry that all of this is happening to Cincy. Definitely a huge blow and I'm not sure why the citizens elected such a mayor. Huge disappointment.

As to the rail cars, if they are paid and the city needs to sell - Oklahoma City is in the market as they are in the final planning stages to building their starter system. I hate for this to happen but if it must be done then selling to OKC 'could' benefit both cities and not jeopardize KC.
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Old December 8th, 2013, 03:00 PM   #102
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From what I heard, the voter turnout was dismal for a mayoral election.
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Old December 8th, 2013, 11:18 PM   #103
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From what I heard the majority of the voters who voted on Crandley are from the suburbs. They are like "we need better roads hurr durr". But the City of Cincinnati doesn't have all that cash to fix every problem. Mainly because people moved to suburbs outside Cincy downtown a while ago and so the tax base has gotten smaller in the last couple of decades. The plan was: streetcar>more people in downtown>more business downtown/tax base bigger>more moneyy!
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Old December 9th, 2013, 01:36 AM   #104
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Originally Posted by MrAronymous View Post
From what I heard the majority of the voters who voted on Crandley are from the suburbs.
Then they need to stop people who live outside of the city limits from voting in municipal elections. If what you are saying is true, it looks like a case of mass voter fraud.
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Old December 9th, 2013, 04:37 AM   #105
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First things first, don't give up on the project just yet. There are a couple of council members on who are on record as saying that if the costs to cancel the project are close to the costs to complete it, they will vote to continue construction. As long as the audit done by KPMG confirms what we all suspect, the project has a decent shot of continuing.



Secondly, as to the question of whether or not Cincy can sell its streetcars to other cities (Kansas City, OKC, etc.), I've heard it is unlikely. Cincinnati's streetcars are equipped with much more powerful motors than most streetcars so that they can climb our steep hills. Not only are these more expensive, but they have greater power and maintenance requirements.

Also, it is not true that a museum to Cincinnati's failed rail projects will be opened.
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Old December 9th, 2013, 03:33 PM   #106
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why was such an idiot elected mayor. really two steps forward one step back.
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Old December 9th, 2013, 03:34 PM   #107
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natiboy- Haha I do believe that was a joke.

Shame for Cincy. I have spent much time there and a streetcar project would definitely bring a little life back into the city and reallyh elp turn Over-the-Rhine back around.

My grandmother lives in Cincy (an old inner city neighborhood) and I will tell you, Cincy needs some new progressive thinking!!

However, there is a fair share of really conservative hillbilly types in Cincy, so it's not entirely surprising.

Fingers crossed it goes through!!
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Old December 10th, 2013, 02:28 AM   #108
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Streetcar supporters kick off new effort to save project
Quote:
Cincinnati’s streetcar supporters will hold a press conference at 10 a.m. today on the steps of City Hall to announce their plan to save the project.

We Believe in Cincinnati will launch a signature drive that will place the streetcar project on the ballot for voters to decide on a charter amendment requiring its completion. The group will need to collect 5,970 valid signatures to make that happen.
Source: http://m.bizjournals.com/cincinnati/...3-12-09&r=full
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Old December 15th, 2013, 12:38 AM   #109
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Cincinnati Enquirer
http://news.cincinnati.com/apps/pbcs...108/312130087/

Quote:
Feds say streetcar money not needed now
But Cranley says he wants it so city doesn't end up on the hook

Dec. 14, 2013
Written by Deirdre Shesgreen

WASHINGTON — The Federal Transit Administration rejected Cincinnati’s request for an extension of the Dec. 19 deadline to decide the fate of the streetcar project, Mayor John Cranley told The Enquirer Friday.

Cranley met with FTA Administrator Peter Rogoff and Deputy Secretary of Transportation John Porcari Friday morning to ask for extra time before the FTA yanks back $45 million in federal funding for the project. Cranley said he explained that streetcar supporters are working to see if they can find enough money to cover the operating costs, in which case Cranley has said he would allow the project to move forward.

City Council last week halted construction on the streetcar while an independent firm analyzes the costs of canceling the project versus continuing it. The study is expected to be completed by Wednesday.

Federal officials told Cranley they would not extend the deadline – but they also said the city didn’t need to figure out how to cover the operating costs until 2016.

Brian Farber, a spokesman for the FTA, said Rogoff and Porcari told Cranley the source of the operating costs does not “need to be identified until construction on the streetcar has been completed, meaning the mayor can utilize the next two years to identify those sources.”

Farber said they also told Cranley they had “no objection to the operating costs of the Cincinnati streetcar being met by philanthropic or other third-party sources.”

Cranley, though, said he believes that, once the city moves ahead, it will be obligated to cover those costs, and he is not comfortable with the possibility that the city would have to shoulder that burden if other financing doesn’t come through.

“In my mind, we don’t spend the money unless we have an operations plan that works,” he said. “If I build it, I have to operate it.”

Cranley said he tried to make a strong case for an extension to federal officials, noting the request was coming from streetcar supporters.

“I said ‘Look, the leader of the (pro-streetcar) group that’s trying to work out a compromise here, they would like to see an extension. The people that share your goal are asking for an extension to work out a deal,’” he said. “But they said ‘We’re going to stick with our letter’” requiring a decision on the streetcar by Dec. 19, Cranley recounted.

Daily operating costs of the streetcar – estimated at $3.5 million to $4.5 million a year – have emerged as a major sticking point. Fares are expected to cover only about 20 percent of that annual tab.

On Thursday, Cranley said he would support finishing the project if private money could be found to operate the system for 30 years. So far, though, no private individual or group has stepped forward, although streetcar supporters are scrambling to line up commitments.

Cranley asked if Rogoff would be willing to speak with one of the pro-streetcar supporters. He agreed, Cranley said, and “we’re in the process of trying to make that happen.”

He said he’s trying to connect the attorney for We Believe in Cincinnati, Paul De Marco, with FTA officials. De Marco did not immediately return a call for comment, nor did a spokesman for We Believe. Cranley added that federal officials did not seem inclined to budge.

“I take them at their word that the deadline is Thursday,” he said.

If supporters can secure the financial commitments by then to cover the operating costs, “great,” Cranley said. “And if not, we’re going to have to move on.”
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Old December 15th, 2013, 03:13 PM   #110
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Is Cranley feeling the heat? That whole charade doesn't look good for a mayor for sure, right at the start of the term.
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Old December 17th, 2013, 11:36 PM   #111
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Cincinnati Enquirer
http://cincinnati.com/blogs/politics...erating-costs/

Quote:
Cranley: SORTA streetcar plan a non-starter
12/17/13 at 12:36pm by Cindi Andrews

Mayor John Cranley says the Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority’s offer to bear responsibility for streetcar operating costs is a non-starter.

Cranley said Tuesday afternoon that SORTA’s plan is not financially stable, and he is concerned the agency will cut Metro bus service to pay for the streetcar.

“We will not jeapordize bus service for the streetcar,” Cranley said. “I’m interested in making sure people can get from their home to their jobs. Metro has no financial wherewithal to cover the shortfall except cutting into bus service. That is not something I will support.”

Metro receives $46 million of its $92 million annual operating budget from the city’s earnings tax. Cranley said SORTA offered a plan to add a tax onto tickets sold for Reds and Bengals games to help pay the streetcar’s annual operating costs. The Reds and Bengals oppose the idea, Cranley said.

Cranley said Metro CEO Terry Garcia Crews said SORTA had just $1 million of the $80 million needed to cover the operating costs. The $1 million has been pledged by the Haile U.S. Bank Foundation.

“I asked her, ‘What’s your plan if these rosy projections don’t pan out?’ ” Cranley said. “She said I’m not worried about it. I’m confident” the money will come through. “I don’t share her confidence. I don’t think it’s responsible.”

Cranley was joined by City Council members Kevin Flynn, Amy Murray and Christopher Smitherman at a Tuesday afternoon press conference. The council members supported Cranley’s position on the SORTA proposal. Flynn and Murray continued to question why annual operating costs have not been established for the streetcar.

“This doesn’t answer the question of operating costs,” Murray said. “We should’ve done this years ago.”

#####

The Board of Trustees of the Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority has volunteered to assume responsibility for streetcar operating costs — possibly paving the way for the streetcar to be completed.

“SORTA’s willingness is based upon assurances from the Cincinnati business and philanthropic communities that they will work with SORTA in public-private partnership to secure the funds required,” the agency said in a release.

The authority also announced that a $1 million commitment has been received from the Haile U.S. Bank Foundation to seed an operating fund.

SORTA said the move will not impact bus service.

Streetcar supporters are facing a deadline of midnight Thursday to pursuade City Council to restart construction or lose $45 million in federal funding for the $133 million project. Cranley has said he would support going forward on the 3.6-mile project if the private sector covered 30 years of operating costs, estimated at $80 million.

Vice Mayor David Mann, one of two swing votes on council, said of the deal: “I think we’re getting awfully close. … This is a wonderful development. The devil’s in the details, but this may do it.”

Councilman Kevin Flynn and Mann would have to agree to move ahead with streetcar construction to overcome a veto threat if Cranley doesn’t support it.

“My position hasn’t changed since last Wednesday,” Flynn said.
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Old December 19th, 2013, 07:02 AM   #112
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Update:

The KPMG audit findings were released today, and revealed that it is nearly as expensive to cancel the project as it is to finish.

The audit also found that the operating costs would be $1-$1.5 million LOWER than originally projected. Private companies/foundations are pledging their financial support.

The Charter Committee, Financial Committee, and the local paper are encouraging council to complete the project.

David Mann, a councilman who was originally anti-streetcar, is expected to vote to continue construction. Kevin Flynn, another anti-streetcar councilman also appears to be leaning that direction. If we can get these two votes, then the vote will go 6-4 in support of the streetcar, which will be enough to override the Mayor's veto.

The vote is tomorrow!
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Old December 19th, 2013, 09:21 PM   #113
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To quote Mayor Cranley: Cincinnatti WILL have a streetcar!!

Congrats! Common sense prevails!

http://www.wcpo.com/news/political/l...ve-a-streetcar
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Old December 19th, 2013, 09:50 PM   #114
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Old December 19th, 2013, 10:26 PM   #115
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Yes! Well done Cincinnati
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Old December 19th, 2013, 11:55 PM   #116
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"We spent the same amount to delay for one month that we would spend to operate the streetcar for a full year"
http://www.wcpo.com/news/political/l...to-complete-it

Congratulation Mr. Cranley.
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Old December 20th, 2013, 01:48 AM   #117
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I wonder how much that KPMG emergency audit cost.
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Old December 20th, 2013, 02:43 AM   #118
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woonsocket54 View Post
I wonder how much that KPMG emergency audit cost.
Good question, considering a private company offered to pay for the whole thing and fund a weeks worth of construction.

Either way, I am thrilled with the result. Construction resumes on Christmas Eve!
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Old December 27th, 2013, 03:47 AM   #119
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Streetcar work resumes with rail delivery

http://cincinnati.com/blogs/politics...rail-delivery/
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Old January 11th, 2014, 03:21 AM   #120
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Here's the November streetcar update. It's a 26 page PDF with some good pictures/info.

http://www.cincinnati-oh.gov/streetc...90/showMeta/0/
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