Streetcar-bus line in Santa Ana Irvine

I came across an article in the Irvine World News yesterday that caught my eye.  It looks like Irvine is going to be spending $280 million on a transit system for the Great Park.

If 6 out of 7 Santa Ana Council Members are Democratic, and 1 out of every 10 residents in Santa Ana use the transit system, I’d like to see similar projects in Central OC.

From the article:

To plan and build the system:•Proposition 116: $121.3 million
•City of Irvine/local sources: $25.6 million
•Renewed Measure M funds: $98.2 million
•State Highway Account: $40 million

To operate and maintain the system:

•Fares: $3 million
•Renewed Measure M funds: $3.6 million
•Advertising revenue: $400,000

The Proposition 116 state funding is $121 million that was first allocated to the city in 1990 for a transportation system near John Wayne Airport. The money was rerouted to Centerline in 1999 – a light-rail line that would have stretched 11.4 miles across Irvine, Costa Mesa and Santa Ana; that was rejected by voters in 2003.

To use the Centerline money, the city must obtain state approval to reallocate the funds while finding a matching $121 million and another $38 million to build the project.

Councilman Larry Agran said that the Great Park system is an important first step in building a city-wide system of various types of transportation.

Council members Christina Shea and Steven Choi both expressed a concern Tuesday about having a combination of streetcars and buses. But, city staff assured the council that plans for the transit system can be modified.

The proposed system would:

•Have 3.4 miles of streetcar track in the Great Park portion. The Spectrum portion would have 1.6 miles of bus route.
•Mostly have street-level stations, except for an elevated portion near the Irvine train station.
•Have wait times of 10 to 15 minutes. Service would be available between 5:30 a.m. and midnight, seven days a week.
•Have nine stations, including: The Double Tree Hotel, Irvine Spectrum, Irvine Technology Center, Irvine train station and the Great Park sports complex.
•Include trees on both sides of the streetcar route to minimize the intrusiveness of overhead electrical wires.
•Add a lane for the bus system on each side of Alton Parkway.
•Have an estimated 5,000 riders each day, with 6,500 during peak demand.
•Provide service to a growing population. Population within four miles of the system is expected to grow by 38,676 residents and 118,755 workers before 2030.

  3 comments for “Streetcar-bus line in Santa Ana Irvine

  1. Andrew Davey
    August 16, 2007 at 12:39 pm

    I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. WHY CAN’T THE REST OF OC BE MORE LIKE IRVINE?! Wow, they’re actually working on real solutions to real problems. They’re coming up with creative transit options to get people moving without cars, which means less traffic AND less greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere. Props to Krom, Agran, and Kang for proving once again that they know how to make things work for the better in Irvine. :-)

    Now I understand why Santa Ana can’t do everything that Irvine can (they don’t have “enough money”), but why can’t they AT LEAST try to work on our real problems here?

  2. Ken
    August 16, 2007 at 4:27 pm

    Prices to build Irvine’s system do not include cost overruns.
    I would add 50% to their low estimates. This is the real world.

    and responding to Andrews statements above:
    “less traffic AND less greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere”
    We live in a crowded county and it will only get worse. Expensive public
    trans systems cost taxpayers more than they are willing to pay.
    Greenhouse gases are stuff you breath out of your nose you have been
    brainwashed by bellringing extremists and our crumbling currupt state
    is falling for this rubbish. This is going to increase our taxes x-times over
    and will do nothing…

  3. Jason Bensley
    August 17, 2007 at 10:39 am

    I don’t think I would call my science teachers all through middle school and high school “bellringing extremeists”, but I went to school in Nebraska, a VERY LIBERAL state (sarcastic emphasis).

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