Cincinnati — Streetcar Order Placed
Cincinnati Mayor Mark Mallory announced that the Spanish Firm CAF (Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles) has been awarded the contract to build the initial group of five streetcars for Cincinnati's new streetcar line, which is currently under construction. The order includes options to purchase up to 25 additional cars. This is the first North American streetcar order for the firm, which has supplied light rail cars to a number of US cities.
The firm was selected from a group of five bidders based on evaluations of technical specifications, electrical requirements, size, cost, and the ability to climb the steep Vine Street hill.
As city spokesperson Meg Olberding told urbancincy.com, “We wanted to select a company that had both previous experience with streetcars and light rail vehicles as well as was the most cost competitive. We will be the first city in the country to have these streetcars.”
The CAF streetcars differ from other modern streetcars running or being offered in the U.S. in that they are 100 percent low floor. This means that doors of the will be even with the boarding platform—providing easy access to those with handicaps, to cyclists, as well as to those with strollers or luggage—all of which can then move easily throughout the car.
The cars will meet "Buy America" requirements as they will be built at CAF's Elmira, New York factory.
The mayor also reported that the city is seeking funding for an extension of the streetcar line further uptown. An application has been filed for a $1.2 million grant under the New Starts program. Those funds, if awarded, will be used for design and alternative analysis.