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New Orleans - March 2001
   

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New Orleans – Streetcar Named Desire Corridor

Rail Transit Online, March 2001

The Regional Transit Authority board on Feb. 20 awarded a $3.76-million consulting contract to Parsons, Brinckerhoff, Quade and Douglas Inc. for preliminary engineering and an environmental impact study for the Desire Corridor streetcar project. If built, the line would link the Central Business District with the Industrial Canal along North Rampart Street and St. Claude Avenue. Once environmental work is completed and design has been brought up to the 30-percent level, the RTA can seek federal funding. It’s hoped that the FTA will agree to provide up to 70 percent of the project's $115.3-million price. The line would be operated by 14 homebuilt vintage streetcar replicas similar to the 24 units equipped with PCC type trucks, motors and controls now being prepared for the Canal Street route, construction of which is slated to begin later this year. RTA wants to start work on Desire shortly after Canal is completed in mid-2004, providing enough time to complete the EIR and final design. Revenue service would start in 2006. The name for the new route was chosen to invoke nostalgia for the long abandoned Desire Street line, made famous by the 1947 Tennessee Williams play. A plaque is planned at the intersection where the new tracks will cross Desire.

 

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