Detroit Transit System To Operate On The Honor System

Discussion in 'The Howard Stern Show' started by BethSucks, Aug 1, 2014.

  1. BethSucks

    BethSucks Well-Known Member Staff Member

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    WASHINGTON – There's a lot riding on Detroit’s new transit system.

    After seven years of planning, work on the ambitious $140 million light rail project started this week amid charges that it already is an antiquated and ‘expensive boondoggle’ that fails to benefit the city’s low-income residents.

    Still, city officials are hopeful that the 3.3-mile project connecting the city’s primary job center with key cultural and entertainment hubs will be an economic boon for Detroit which has been battered by fiscal decay and the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history.

    The M-1 Rail will eventually connect three neighborhoods and stretch from the city’s north end to the south. After several starts and stops, the project, already $12 million over budget, is expected to be operational by late 2016.

    Concerns remain about the project's price tag, particularly in a city that struggles to provide basic services, and whether it can really attract a steady stream of passengers in a place where parking is abundant. The Motor City, after all, loves its cars. The project is partly propped up by federal taxpayers.

    The line, though, is set to launch around the time the new $650 million Detroit Red Wings arena, as well as other downtown businesses and entertainment hot spots, are scheduled to open their doors. The goal for the Motor City is simple: make Detroit as attractive and accessible as possible to residents and visitors in the hope it will jump-start the local economy.

    The project would be Detroit’s first streetcar line since its transit system was dismantled in the 1950s. It’s projected to create about 2,000 new jobs. The M-1 Rail – a curbside loop powered mostly by overhead electrical lines – is expected to carry 6,000 passengers per day, serving 12 stops.

    The new streetcars will operate along the Woodward Corridor, which is an area within metro Detroit. M-1 will connect Detroit’s downtown, midtown and New Center areas -- all of which have been economically hard-hit in recent years but are now at the epicenter of Detroit’s revitalization efforts.

    Rep. John Conyers Jr., D-Mich., has been a big supporter of the project from the start. He believes the rail line will attract new businesses and says the transit system will give Detroiters “additional, affordable mass transport options.”

    But can it survive?

    Oddly, the transit system will be operated -- at least at first -- almost entirely on an honor system for the $1.50-per-ride fee. It’s a move some argue might not be the wisest for a city that’s been a poster child for corruption in recent years.

    Others just say it’s a bad idea.

    “Light rail is sooo last century,” Cato Institute’s Randal O’Toole wrote. “In fact, it is a giant hoax perpetrated on the taxpayers of Detroit and the United States.”

    O’Toole says the idea of a light rail doesn’t work in today’s society and calls it “an obsolete form of transportation that does not promote economic development, relieve congestion, save energy or reduce air pollution. All it does is cost lots of money.”

    George Galster, professor of urban affairs at Wayne State University, echoed much of the sentiment in a recent interview with Bloomberg News. He called Detroit’s streetcars “a terrible idea” that will benefit property owners and not low-income residents who can’t afford to live near the Woodward Avenue corridor.

    He also argues there’s no guarantee that the cost of operating the light rail system won’t backfire and end up costing Detroit even more.

    “All the city of Detroit needs is another expensive boondoggle,” he said.

    But supporters say Detroit’s learned from its mistakes and is ready for a do-over.

    “The people who live and work in this city have tenacious spirits,” Roger Penske, M-1 RAIL’s chair, said in a written statement. “It’s a passion and love for this place that gets projects like this moving. We are now on the path to revolutionize the way we move throughout the Woodward corridor and beyond.”

    The federal government says it’s convinced and is on board too.

    In January 2013, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced $25 million in federal funding for the transportation project.

    “We will finish M-1,” he said at the time. “We will create a regional transportation authority with new buses, new facilities and think of what this will do for this region,” LaHood said, adding, “This will become an economic engine.”

    Funding for the M1-Rail is one of the first nonprofit, public-private partnerships of its size in the transit industry, M-1 COO Paul Childs said.

    Of the estimated $140 million it will cost, $110 million has already been raised by private donors including Quicken Chairman Dan Gilbert and Penske Chairman Roger Penske. Another $5 million is expected to come from the federal New Markets Tax Credit Program which offers tax credits for development in low-income communities.

    Project organizers tell FoxNews.com they have narrowed the field to two bidders to design, engineer and manufacture six street cars, which typically cost between $2 million to $6 million per climate-controlled car. The cars are also expected to seat 60 people with standing room for 120. They will also have Wi-Fi, bicycle storage and on-board ticketing.

    After years of people fleeing from the city, there has been a small uptick in population. Investors like Quicken Loans say they are looking to Detroit with renewed interest. Other big investor boosts are helping the city pick up the pieces and re-brand itself rather than go down in history as an example of urban decay and fiscal mismanagement.
     
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  2. BethSucks

    BethSucks Well-Known Member Staff Member

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    [​IMG]
     
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  3. Beth143nacho

    Beth143nacho Well-Known Member VIP

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    Silly democrats.... I'm sure they'll demonizes any republican that tries to criticize the idea.
     
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  4. PI Nate

    PI Nate Disenfranchised since 1984... Gold

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    [​IMG]
     
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  5. NotMyBro

    NotMyBro VIP Extreme Gold

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    Honor system? In Detroit????

    :lmao:
    [​IMG]
     
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  6. fletchman71

    fletchman71 Well-Known Member

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    I took an Amtrak train to Detroit last year. The station is a good 5 miles from downtown Detroit and there is a White Castle across the street with bullet-proof glass. Luckily there were a lot of cabs waiting at the station.
     
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  7. Dlist

    Dlist Well-Known Member VIP

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    This should work out well...:rolleye:
     
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  8. 1Vegasgirl

    1Vegasgirl Well-Known Member VIP Gold

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    Just keep sticking it to the taxpayers.
     
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  9. Pickle Jar

    Pickle Jar Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, that will work. :rolleyes:
     
  10. BeerCanThick

    BeerCanThick Well-Known Member

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    Ah. The thing will be financed by the honor of black people in Detroit. THE MONEY'S GONNA BE ROLLIN' IN!
     
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  11. sstressed

    sstressed enhancement toker VIP

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    :hat:
    :rofl:
     
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  12. scoobyla

    scoobyla Well-Known Member

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    Silly republicans.... I'm sure they'll demonizes any democrats on anything.
     
  13. scoobyla

    scoobyla Well-Known Member

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    I support hovercraft transportation
     
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  14. wife is a whore

    wife is a whore Stripped of POTY for butthurting staff VIP

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    They should charge each car's drug dealer a 10% tax on sales to pay for the system.

    I always heard the Staten Island ferry had great drugs on it, before they started w/ some security on it.
     
  15. sstressed

    sstressed enhancement toker VIP

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    well, to be fair the dems these days are a bunch of hysterical homos, almost homos, young people who have been fed shit by the left for their whole lives, females, LGBTs, those who barely speak english and various rich fucks and bored old lefty scum from the 60s.

    guns are evil, repubs are nazis, if you don't like obama you are raysis, and borders are so yesteray. :yay:
     
  16. DrSublux

    DrSublux Who am dis VIP

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    entertainment hubs will be an economic boon for Detroit

    poor choice of words?

    or typo?
     
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  17. NiggalissCage

    NiggalissCage Well-Known Member

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    The best part is if the let the residents ride for free, they will never be able to charge, they will claim its racist and the government is trying to keep them down.

    It will be free and eventually dismantled.
     
  18. scoobyla

    scoobyla Well-Known Member

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    It's all nonsense, both sides agree on 97+% of issues.

    I wouldn't call anyone a raysis, but the vast majority of people who get overly emotional about how bad the pres. policies are, supported similar policies of the former pres.
     
  19. SouthernListen

    SouthernListen I don't follow the crowd. Sorry about that. VIP

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    At least the land needed to build rails on is dirt cheap.
     
  20. smichal

    smichal A1 Dick Game

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    if Detroit is broke, why are they spending money on this?
     
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