I wrote last week on the potential for Brooklyn to build its own streetcar network, arguing that such a system would be effective in (relatively) cheaply improving the commuting options of people living in transit-unfriendly sections of the borough.
Little did I know that the city already has $295,000 earmarked by the federal government to study such a network.
Bob Diamond, discoverer of the borough’s now-famous Atlantic Avenue tunnel and streetcar advocate, was kind enough to inform me that the money was inserted into the 2005 SAFETEA-LU bill by Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez. The project has been placed on the state transportation improvement program this year, and the city DOT is supposed to issue an RFP for the contract to do the study, but has yet to do anything. Time to wake up.
I know, $295,000 isn’t much money. But it’s a start, and even the most basic first step in planning makes streetcar service in the borough more likely.