There was an article in a local business rag here reporting on a proposal for a 3.4 mile loop with what they called trains but sounded a bit more like street cars that has been taken up by a private coalition.
Light-rail for Woodward?
I also thought that if I had the money, this would be a great pet project to try to undertake because by going at it privately because a private entity could spend a lot less time trying to get multiple competing governments to agree on routes and would presumably have most of the financing in place and not be trying to float a bond.
Does anybody know of any examples where a private company came in designed, built, and operated a successfull mass transit route? I would imagine that once it is up and running, the goal of the private operator would be to sell the infastructure off to the city or county or some sort of regional board.
If anybody is intimately familiar with the route that the above article talks about, what do you think about the loop just being along one particular street from end to end? In my dream world, it would be a loop that would encircle Woodward Avenue by running along the roads one block out from Woodward. I would think that this would better serve areas with a higher concentration of residents (especially along Cass Avenue to the west of Woodward and in certain areas of John R. to the east where there has been a relatively high amount of condo development recently and more planned) and better serve some of the major employers along the route like the Detroit Medical Center, Wayne State University, and the State of Michigan.
But most importantly, Woodward Avenue is a state highway and I think setting up private transit stops or an embedded track along a state highway right-of-way would not be worth the red tape that would need to be worked through.