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Streetcar Sends $25 Million Request to Feds

By Eric Richardson
Published: Wednesday, February 10, 2010, at 04:53PM
Red Streetcar Eric Richardson [Flickr]

Get ready to hear more about the Downtown streetcar.

The non-profit charged with building a Downtown streetcar today sent off its application for $25 million in federal funding, and later this month will launch an awareness campaign that will place ads on neighborhood bus stops.

The federal funds would provide a big boost to the streetcar project, which is estimated to cost $100 million to construct. The first line would connect L.A. Live and the Convention Center to Bunker Hill via Broadway.

The money is available under an "urban circulator" grant program administered by the Federal Transit Authority. The funding notice did not officially post until December 23, so L.A. Streetcar, Inc., Council District 14 and city staff had to scramble to meet today's application deadline.

Six awards are expected to be given out in this round of funding.

At a Bringing Back Broadway streetcar committee meeting this afternoon, LASI Executive Director Dennis Allen said that he believes the project made a strong case to the federal government. The application included letters of support from stakeholders across Downtown, and even an official state endorsement written by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The upcoming ad campaign, built around the tag line "It's on track," will utilize space donated by CBS Decaux on Downtown street furniture.

Construction on the streetcar is expected to take place in 2013, with the line ready for use in 2014.

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