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daniel nudnik

Streetcars in GR

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Interchange, streetcar project included in federal highway bill

Friday, July 29, 2005

By Sarah Kellogg and Kyla King

The Grand Rapids Press

WASHINGTON -- Plans for a new interchange on Int. 196 in Jenison and a high-tech streetcar system in Grand Rapids are moving forward, thanks to a federal highway funding bill appr

http://www.mlive.com/news/grpress/index.ss...0260.xml&coll=6

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Yeah, I had posted this update in the Mass Transit Alternatives thread. Very exciting!

Now that I am at home and have my "hard copy" of the paper, the notes in the margin say: "Preliminary engineering for The Rapid Fixed Guideway Corridor Project, $14.4 million.

The next meeting of the ITP is August 31st:

http://www.ridetherapid.org/Main/about/board.htm

A quick google search gives me this:

http://www.google.com/search?q=The+Rapid+F...r=&start=0&sa=N

It looks like BRT is the new alternative rapid transit around the country. It must be due to the high costs of rail.

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I am sure that this money will be 'borrowed' by Detroit like the last $30 million we got from the Feds for this project. Really, I would not expect a penny of this to be spent in GR. When the Feds give money, it is still totally optional as to what the State ends up doing with it.

My guess is that this will once again end up in the hands of the worthless and hopelessly corrupt metro Detroit officials who act like they would like to see mass transit in Detroit. In all reality, at best, it may make it to Kilpatrick's party fund - maybe Granholm's re-election committee, I hear she needs the money and is willing to do just about anything for it.

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I am sure that this money will be 'borrowed' by Detroit like the last $30 million we got from the Feds for this project.  Really, I would not expect a penny of this to be spent in GR.  When the Feds give money, it is still totally optional as to what the State ends up doing with it.

My guess is that this will once again end up in the hands of the worthless and hopelessly corrupt metro Detroit officials who act like they would like to see mass transit in Detroit.  In all reality, at best, it may make it to Kilpatrick's party fund - maybe Granholm's re-election committee, I hear she needs the money and is willing to do just about anything for it.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I would like to hear more about this $30 million. I was not aware of that.

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An article in my hard copy of the Press says that we need to come up with a 20% match in State funds ($5.2 million) to get the $26 million for new busses and this preliminary engineering work. Peter Varga of ITP says with this money, we can do the first 3 year segment of a 10 year plan to implement the "high-tech streetcars". Time to start e-mailing our representatives.

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district 75 - east side GR: jerry kooiman

[email protected]

district 76 - west side GR: michael sak

[email protected]

district 86 - EGR, ada, cascade, forest hills, GR Twp: Dave Hildenbrand

[email protected]

district 77 - wyoming, grandville, byron center: Kevin Green

[email protected]

district 72 - kentwood, gaines: Glenn Steil

[email protected]

district 73 - north kent: Tom Pearce

[email protected]

let's get writing forumers!

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The Federal Bill was passed by Bush on Friday:

Bush signs $286b transportation bill

'Long-overdue' law expected to create jobs

By Alan Wirzbicki, Globe Correspondent {sodEmoji.{sodEmoji.|}} July 31, 2005

Boston Globe

WASHINGTON -- After more than two years of delay, President Bush yesterday signed into law a giant transportation bill that will funnel billions of dollars into public works in New England and allow regional officials to resume long-term planning for road and rail projects that had been held up while Congress bickered over how to divide up the money.

About 80 percent of the $286.4 billion transportation bill approved Friday by the House and Senate will pay for highway projects, with most of the rest reserved for mass transit. Every New England state will see an increase in federal funding, although the region will receive a slightly smaller portion of the total national transportation budget than in the past.

http://64.233.167.104/search?q=cache:ysx8D...ton+globe&hl=en

The bill is called The Surface Transportation Law or TEA-21 (to reference in your e-mails). Detroit is slated to get $100 million to continue studying their mass transit plan between Ann Arbor and Detroit.

http://www.detnews.com/2005/commuting/0507/29/met-263745.htm

We have to make sure that our share does not get taken away :thumbsup: The best part is that we are already building on an award-winning Rapid system, whereas Detroit's bus system is not run well at all.

Here are also our local State Senators:

Ken Sikkema

District 28

[email protected]

Bill Hardiman

District 29

[email protected]

It probably wouldn't hurt to send Vern Ehlers an e-mail to thank him for voting yes, since he also has some pull with the State Legislature.

Go to this link and goto: Write Your Rep

http://www.house.gov/ehlers/contact.html

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MetroGRkid should be able to give us some insight on this as he is on a steering committee. What is the inside scoop?

Joe

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MetroGRkid should be able to give us some insight on this as he is on a steering committee. What is the inside scoop?

Joe

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I guess he doesn't check in here as much as he used to. Has there been any talk about seeking private funds for this? Maybe each station could be partially funded by individuals or companies, which would also supply public art for the station like they have in Portland and other areas.

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I got an e-mail back from my representative today saying that he has been speaking with Mayor Heartwell and is currently working to get the matching funds.

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go GRDad Go!

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

:lol: I hope I'm not the only one who sent out e-mails :thumbsup:

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I actually received a personal e-mail from Vern Ehlers thanking me for my e-mail. He is VERY worried that the State legislature is going to drop the ball and not match the funds, after all of the hard work that he and others put into this Federal bill to get funding for Michigan. He urged me to e-mail my State reps (although I already did ;) ). You would be surprised how much they take into account just a few e-mails from constituents (if written properly and cordially). If they don't hear anything about mass transit, they assume that no-one cares about it and it moves down the priority list. And coming from just a regular citizen carries more weight (I believe) than from a special interest group that stands to PROFIT from funding.

I know there are other areas that are hurting in the State budget, but I think those will correct themselves (or get corrected) over time as the business cycle swings. But planning for future transit will always get put on the back burner if not brought up now, and steady pressure is applied.

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I guess he doesn't check in here as much as he used to.  Has there been any talk about seeking private funds for this?  Maybe each station could be partially funded by individuals or companies, which would also supply public art for the station like they have in Portland and other areas.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Metrogrkid has been drowning in the work of running MBEI (www.mbei.org) not to mention getting geared up to launch into the PROJECT NEXT I of the COMMITTEE FOR THE PLANNING OF A WORLD-CLASS DOWNTOWN. Now that summer is coming in for a landing, stay tuned.

As far as the GT2 (Great Transit Grand Tomorrows) Mass Transit Rail Project, I will let you know what is going down after our next upcoming meeting. I am still ULTRA-IRKED that my GT2 peers nixed the heavy-rail/electrified third rail/MARTA-style rail option before the public even got to see the kind of spin-off development that a system like that produces. They said, "too expensive". I said, "SPEND NOW TO MAKE THE WORLD-CLASS SYSTEM WE DESERVE THAT CONNECTS THE DOWNTOWN - FORD AIRPORT CORRIDOR". Sigh

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Metrogrkid has been drowning in the work of running MBEI (www.mbei.org) not to mention getting geared up to launch into the PROJECT NEXT I of the COMMITTEE FOR THE PLANNING OF A WORLD-CLASS DOWNTOWN.  Now that summer is coming in for a landing, stay tuned.

As far as the GT2 (Great Transit Grand Tomorrows) Mass Transit Rail Project, I will let you know what is going down after our next upcoming meeting.  I am still ULTRA-IRKED that my GT2 peers nixed the heavy-rail/electrified third rail/MARTA-style rail option before the public even got to see the kind of spin-off development that a system like that produces.  They said, "too expensive".  I said, "SPEND NOW TO MAKE THE WORLD-CLASS SYSTEM WE DESERVE THAT CONNECTS THE DOWNTOWN - FORD AIRPORT CORRIDOR".  Sigh

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Any way that people can get involved? Next public meeting date?

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Any way that people can get involved?  Next public meeting date?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Dad:

GT2 is a subcommittee of the ITP Board of Directors and the members of GT2 are appointed by the elected officials that comprise ITP's board (former Mayor John H. Logie appointed me). Because of that I believe the sessions are closed - HOWEVER - in the happenstance that I may be wrong, please call ITP / The Rapid and ask the secretary to find out for you if in fact you CAN sit in the gallery of the GT2 meetings. I'd personally LOVE IT if my URBANPLANET peers (with all of their logical big city mindsets) would hear what I hear when I hear it in regard to our emerging mass transit rail project.

-Metrogrkid

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