Streetcars on Peachtree?

A proposed redevelopment of the Peachtree Street corridor includes bringing back streetcars. I suppose it would help move foot traffic along Peachtree, but I think the idea is more aesthetic – which is really cool.

The plan includes two streetcar lines that would cost up to $450 million. The longest, a 15-mile stretch from Brookhaven in the north to the Fort McPherson area in the south, would cut through Buckhead, Midtown, downtown and the emerging Castleberry Hill district.

A separate four-mile line would circulate in the downtown area among hotels and tourist attractions, from the Georgia Aquarium to the Martin Luther King Jr. Historic District.

It’s unclear whether MARTA or some other entity would build and operate the streetcar system.

23 comments

  1. Demonbeck says:

    Foot traffic on Peachtree is horrible these days. The other night, it took me three hours to get from Hooters to the Ritz Carlton at 7:30 PM.

  2. Mike Hauncho says:

    My question is this. Will the $450 million do anything to cut down on traffic? If all it is doing is helping foot traffic then I think it is a waste of money. People will still drive their cars into work. If they are walking then and getting out of their cars which will help reduce traffic why then would you put a trolly on the road which takes up space and lanes? Yes I think it would be neat to have them but I think with our traffic congestion as bad as it is we need to focus on ways to get people from their homes to their offices without the use of cars. This is a lot of money which will only benefit a few. These limited area trollies and buses only allow for transportation while you are at work or for the few that live in town. I dont think it goes to help the overall transportation problems we see every morning on the interstates.

  3. Demonbeck says:

    $450 million will build a lot of commuter parking lots and buy a lot of buses to transport them to MARTA stations.

  4. Fiddes says:

    I live on Peachtree and while it’s super to think that 67% of people would use it for lunch (per that worthless video), the fact remains that it would mean losing at least one lane on an already crowded street.

    Further, I don’t much care for the idea that a special “taxing district” would be created so those that live along the Street and those who own businesses there would have yet another tax to pay.

  5. Pappy says:

    Streetcars can share lanes with other cars, so it wouldn’t necessarily mean losing a lane.

    Even if it did, I’d be for it.

  6. memberg says:

    Anyone who is a Cobb GOPer should keep their opinions about MARTA to themselves. MARTA is as bad as it is in large part due to Cobb’s refusal to pay into MARTA.

  7. Pappy says:

    Mike,
    How the f*&^ are you complaining about this when you don’t even live in the city, and thus, will not have to pay a dime for it?

    If you want to be able to use it when you’re not at work, try living where you work.

  8. Big Mack says:

    I remember the old street cars and after them the electric buses sparking and arcing all over downtown. If you think that traffic is bad now, just imagine what it will be like with two rails on a portion of the existing street and the street cars stopping every block to let the passengers on and off. This is a piece of nostalgia that Atlanta would probably be better off without.

  9. bird says:

    I live intown, work on Peachtree, and my business will pay this tax. I think it is a great idea!! The thing about “clogging up” Peachtree is that no one takes Peachtree to get anywhere in a hurry. I always take the one-way roads on either side of Peachtree (Juniper/Courtland or Spring) if I need to be somewhere fast.

    The biggest complaint about Marta is that it doesn’t make enough stops. My guess is this will be integrated with Marta so someone can go to the nearest Marta station and take the trolley to their destination.

    And I agree with Pappy. If you don’t live in Atlanta and won’t be paying the special tax, please hinder transportation initiatives in your own city/county and leave us alone. Some people just hate Atlanta for whatever reason, and it is just petty obstructionism of a great city.

  10. Demonbeck says:

    Bird,

    That’s fine, take $450 million of the state’s transportation dollars and spend it on something that you think would be nice. Nevermind the fact that it will actually CREATE traffic in the city.

    And then go and bitch and moan about how long it takes you on GA 400 to get to Fogo and Bones at happy hour and demand that the state spend the remainder of its allocated $2 billion federal transportation dollars per year to fix that mess – even though they could simply ease traffic to Buckhead by removing the streetcars you supported.

    Don’t worry about problems in Savannah, Macon, Columbus, Augusta, Brunswick, Albany and the rest of the state. As long as Georgia’s transportation system fits into your little world between Courtland St. and the Omni – everything will be all right.

  11. Demonbeck says:

    Thanks memberg, I know I am nothing but a lowly non-Atlantan, but I felt I needed to put on airs and speak to him in a language I knew he could understand.

    I’ll just slink back into the shadows and let his fellow Atlantans suck up all the money I and my fellow Savannahians provide for them. We know our place is at the back of the bus. (Well, it’s not really a bus – it’s more of a streetcar.)

  12. bird says:

    Where is your proof that this will “CREATE” traffic? If I was going to Buckhead, I would take Piedmont, not Peachtree. Taking Peachtree to Buckhead would be a terrible idea, with or without a trolley.

    The reason the Atlanta and the business leaders want this is because it may lessen traffic, but it would certainly provide a great tourist attraction.

    And how does this affect Savannah? This is self-taxing. Should businesses along Peachtree enact a special tax for highways in Savannah? Why can’t you let Atlanta govern Atlanta and mind your own business? What must you insist on telling Atlanta how to run itself? Isn’t local control a conservative idea?

    I’m happy where I live and work. I’m from Ringgold, Georgia, and I loved growing up there. I have no animosity for rural Georgia, so why do some folks from rural Georgia hate Atlanta?

  13. Mike Hauncho says:

    Pappy,

    I appreciate you sharing your thoughts and proving that you are an idiot. You obviously don’t know who you are talking about as I live in Buckhead and work in Midtown. I pay my share of taxes while living, working, and playing in the City limits. I thank you for respecting us enough to change the letters of your profanity as I would have been heartbroken to know that I was not loved on Valentine’s Day. Next time write something of value so the rest of us are not subjected to your worthless comments.

  14. Demonbeck says:

    You’re right bird, I don’t have a government study telling me that a vehicle riding down Peachtree during rush hour taking up a lane of traffic and making frequent stops will create more traffic on the road.

    I just think it will.

    Secondly, I am from Savannah, I pass through fields of marsh grass on my way to work, not fields of the finest agricultural products on the world. We are far from rural here, but thanks for letting us know how you feel about everything outside the Emerald City, Mr. Oz.

  15. bird says:

    Demonbeck,

    I never called Savannah rural. And again, no one commutes on Peachtree Street. It doesn’t happen. You act like the streetcar will be blocking Ga 400.

    Because you refuse to read my statements with any attention to detail, let me put it succinctly:

    If you live in Savannah, let Atlanta govern Atlanta. This is none of your business. Or what’s good for the goose is good for the gander, let’s start debating Savannah’s permissiveness, allowing drunks to wander the streets drinking, gambling boats to dock and whatnot.

  16. Demonbeck says:

    “let Atlanta govern Atlanta. This is none of your business. ”

    From the AJC Story:

    “About half of the $1 billion price tag would come from a special taxing district that would encompass the entire Peachtree corridor, a change that would require City Council approval, Bell said.

    Every property owner, both residential and commercial, would pay an additional tax each year based on the value of their home or business. The amount has yet to be determined, but Bell said the owner of a $300,000 condo might be expected to pay an additional $250 a year.

    The remaining money would come from a variety of sources, including city, state and federal governments, a dedicated parking tax, and from private donors.”

    State and Federal dollars will go into paying for this project – making it very much my problem.

    “no one commutes on Peachtree Street. It doesn’t happen.”

    Then what would be the traffic that appears on Peachtree Street every morning between 7-9 and every afternoon between 4:30 – 6:30? Tourists trying to locate Scitrek?

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