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Corpus Christi - May 2004
   

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Corpus Christi — Streetcar Route Opposed

Rail Transit Online, May 2004

The first serious political opposition to the proposed downtown streetcar project surfaced on Apr. 27 when several City Council members attacked some of the findings made by consultants, primarily a route along the bay front.   PB Consult suggested using either the Shoreline Boulevard median or Water and Chaparral streets, where the trolleys would operate in mixed traffic.  Three council members said they would resist spending municipal funds for a Shoreline Boulevard alignment, and one appeared to be wary of the rail scheme in general.  “I'm concerned about the dollar amount you are going to ask this community to put forth,” said Councilman Rex Kinnison.  The cost of the approximately two-mile (3.2 km) line has been estimated at around $30 million, with about 20 percent of that coming from the city.  Kinnison asked the council to vote on the streetcar at an upcoming meeting, and the city manager agreed to place the matter on the May 11 agenda.  Corpus Christi Regional Transportation Authority General Manager Linda Watson said she doesn’t want to scrap to scheme but added it could only continue with the approval of lawmakers.  “I've never heard the council say that they're not supportive of the project,” she said.  “If at any point they say they don't want it, it stops.”  PB Consult principal Alan Wulkan defended the bay front route because it has fewer disadvantages than the alternative while providing greater direct access to traffic generators.  But critics claim the overhead wiring would be visually polluting.

 

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