Here Comes S.L.U.T. #2 in Seattle

With a deal between the Seattle City Council and Sound Transit a streetcar line will be built to connect the downtown transit tunnel (which part I ask?) and the International District to the light rail station at Capitol Hill.  This will provide a streetcar connector and supposedly compensates for the dropped light rail stop on First Hill, Bruce Gray, a Sound Transit spokesman reportedly.  So I guess Portland (specifically Clackamas County) will absolutely be getting more modern streetcar purchases.

Between Portland and Seattle, we’ll both be working on a line (I suspect theirs is about a year behind our current loop extension to the east side of the river).  Both cities will be purchasing the streetcars from Oregon Iron Works who is now building the modern streetcar.  This will bring more revenue into the Portland area and into the streetcar expansion efforts.  What Portland needs now, or OIG specifically, is more purchases.  The cities that want to have a modern streetcar need to really work together to drive that price down!  (Sam Adams, you’re primed to lead this effort!)

Either way, I have my problems with the modern streetcars, but overall I am supportive of streetcar systems and what they can do for development and increased livability within a city.  I’m really looking forward to how both of these systems, one an expansion and one an autonomous (I believe) system.  That will make a total of four systems in the northwest alone;  Seattle’s South Lake Union Trolley (SLUT), Tacoma’s Link, Portland Streetcar, and when the new additional line in Seattle.

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