UPDATE DEC. 19, 2013 — Congratulations to all who worked so hard to continue construction of the Cincinnati Streetcar! With construction restarting on Christmas eve, there is no better present to give to the future of Cincinnati and to Ohio at large. Many thanks City Council for its 6-3 veto-proof vote and to so many cities who spent many hours and dollars organizing and mobilizing thousands of citizens who care so deeply about their city! While All Aboard Ohio is grateful to so many, we’d like to single out former Mayor Mark Mallory for his courage, to Mr. Streetcar John Schneider for being a calming voice at a time of great emotion, to Ryan Messer for energizing this effort and to Eric Avner of the Haile Foundation for his generosity.
Nearly 12,000 petition signatures were gathered in just one week, engaging people in a civic process many of whom had never been so engaged before. While petitions are not needed at this time, they are a substantial resource from which to draw should it be needed in the near future.
Hundreds of construction laborers are returning to work because of the streetcar and real estate developments downtown and in the stabilizing Over-The-Rhine neighborhood are back on track. And just as importantly, no city workers are getting laid off because of the streetcar. It has a sound operating plan with revenues from parking, the casino and private sponsors, with a substantial guarantee now from the Haile Foundation and a strong partner in the Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority. Although it will be nearly two years before the first streetcar turns a wheel, during which time more sponsors will be secured. No matter what happens, the city must still be the ultimate guarantor to please their federal investor. The Cincinnati Streetcar is projected to achieve a 270% return on investment from new jobs, development and other private-sector investment — a projection reviewed and endorsed by the University of University.
Read All Aboard Ohio’s letter sent to Mr. Cranley in mid-November regarding the streetcar as well as our offer to work with him on the potential for future Amtrak expansion to Cincinnati.
Thanks again to all of you who worked to make this happen. You are making Cincinnati and Ohio a greater place to live, work and visit. Trains and transit will make Ohio’s cities and towns stronger. Join All Aboard Ohio today to help us make that goal a reality.