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Houston Metro Light Rail East Side/Green Line (formerly Brown Line)

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Guest danax

Public Meeting

Date: Thursday, April 27, 2006

Time: 6 - 8 p.m.

Location: Magnolia Multi Service Center

Address:

7037 Capitol

Purpose

This is a follow-up from the previous meeting held on Wednesday, March 29, 2006 at the same location. In this meeting METRO staff and consulting team will discuss preliminary findings, contruction concerns, alignment/right-of-way details, and ridership projections.

The meeting is being held in a wheelchair-accessible location. Any persons requiring translation or other special communication accommodations should contact METRO Community Outreach at 713-739-4018 at least 72 hours prior to the meeting. Every reasonable effort will be made to accommodate these needs.

I can't make it, unfortunately. If anyone attends this, please let us know what corridor looks the most likely, as this Harrisburg line might be the most influential in terms of development in the entire city, as the area is so fertile for redevelopment with little opposition.

I would love to see a bold move and run it down Navigation and help to speed up the conversion of that Ninfa's area into a great residential/retail/recreation zone. Harrisburg Blvd. is fine too, but there are better tracts of real estate in that zone towards the bayou and I'm thinking that all trains crossing Navigation pass over or under the street. Navigation is a cool name for a neighborhood too.

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I agree completely. :) In fact, the engineering requirements may make Harrisburg and Canal inadequate options to begin with, whereas Navigation is the path of least resistance. Additionally, there is an industrial district just east of Lockwood that would be ripe for redevelopment. A lot of the buildings would make good residential conversions, but a fair amount would be acres and acres of new residential construction. And that's the kind of development that a neighborhood needs to build demand for things like high-end grocery stores.

Ultimately (way way out in the long term), I'd like to see a light rail line running down both Navigation and Clinton. I think that the Buffalo Bayou plans would absolutely take off with such an arrangement...minus the green space, but that would never have happened anyway. Then you could extend the Navigation line down Broadway through old Harrisburg and to Hobby Airport. Lots of apartments in that corridor = lots of riders.

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I agree completely. :) In fact, the engineering requirements may make Harrisburg and Canal inadequate options to begin with, whereas Navigation is the path of least resistance. Additionally, there is an industrial district just east of Lockwood that would be ripe for redevelopment. A lot of the buildings would make good residential conversions, but a fair amount would be acres and acres of new residential construction. And that's the kind of development that a neighborhood needs to build demand for things like high-end grocery stores.

Ultimately (way way out in the long term), I'd like to see a light rail line running down both Navigation and Clinton. I think that the Buffalo Bayou plans would absolutely take off with such an arrangement...minus the green space, but that would never have happened anyway. Then you could extend the Navigation line down Broadway through old Harrisburg and to Hobby Airport. Lots of apartments in that corridor = lots of riders.

From what METRO's rep told me, the only MUST stop is the Magnolia transit center, which is between Harrisburg and Capitol. They want to tie in multiple bus routes. Ed Wulfe, the developer guru, is pushing BIG time to make it go to Gulfgate as well. This would tie in to the Gulfgate transit center as well.

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From what METRO's rep told me, the only MUST stop is the Magnolia transit center, which is between Harrisburg and Capitol. They want to tie in multiple bus routes. Ed Wulfe, the developer guru, is pushing BIG time to make it go to Gulfgate as well. This would tie in to the Gulfgate transit center as well.

Which is more expensive? Constructing the 4.3-mile line along a corridor that is physically-inadequate to handle it or rebuilding a transit center or two? What is a transit center, anyway, but a big canopy, some concrete lanes, and a public restroom?

EDIT: What about the linear park along the old railroad tracks between E. and W. Hendrick Streets? We could run it up Navigation to that point, then use the linear park as a right-of-way to bring the line straight in to Harrisburg at 75th.

Edited by TheNiche

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Which is more expensive? Constructing the 4.3-mile line along a corridor that is physically-inadequate to handle it or rebuilding a transit center or two? What is a transit center, anyway, but a big canopy, some concrete lanes, and a public restroom?

EDIT: What about the linear park along the old railroad tracks between E. and W. Hendrick Streets? We could run it up Navigation to that point, then use the linear park as a right-of-way to bring the line straight in to Harrisburg at 75th.

I'm simplying relaying information. i agree about the physically inadequate route. I just don't want them to close any cross streets, it really will hurt the eastside more because we are already innudated with heavy rail that regularly closes many streets.

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Guest danax

I think the decision to go with trains will accelerate the redevelopment of this corridor. The current residents are practical and bus, GRT or light rail make little difference to them, it's those who seek the sleek, chic and beautiful that will come for the train.

I think the timing of this line is perfect. The initial wave of development in the Warehouse District and Upper East End (Clinton Dr.) has blazed a trail for the next group, and what better way to open up the vast midsection of the area than with a sleek light rail line. The nabe to the near north of Harrisburg Blvd. will probably be next to begin getting torn down and replaced with townhouses.

Does anyone know what color this line will be named? The maps from Metro use what looks like a brown line.

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If the rail does go to Gulf Gate from Harrisburg, any guesses as to the connecting street between the two? Telephone? Wayside? 75th?

75//garland is what was on the plan initially but i believe that was scrapped

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I think the decision to go with trains will accelerate the redevelopment of this corridor. The current residents are practical and bus, GRT or light rail make little difference to them, it's those who seek the sleek, chic and beautiful that will come for the train.

I think the timing of this line is perfect. The initial wave of development in the Warehouse District and Upper East End (Clinton Dr.) has blazed a trail for the next group, and what better way to open up the vast midsection of the area than with a sleek light rail line. The nabe to the near north of Harrisburg Blvd. will probably be next to begin getting torn down and replaced with townhouses.

Does anyone know what color this line will be named? The maps from Metro use what looks like a brown line.

Probably the "Brown Line". I think using colors for lines is easier because you can merge them over onto other lines easier (maps and stuff). I think they should have the Southeast (Green) and East End/Harrisburg (Brown) go north once they hit the Red Line to the Intermodel Station. That way, someone on the Northside can catch a train and make it to U of H without having to transfer, except for at the Intermodel Station (where the Green and Brown lines would terminate).

Edited by Trae

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Probably the "Brown Line". I think using colors for lines is easier because you can merge them over onto other lines easier (maps and stuff). I think they should have the Southeast (Green) and East End/Harrisburg (Brown) go north once they hit the Red Line to the Intermodel Station. That way, someone on the Northside can catch a train and make it to U of H without having to transfer, except for at the Intermodel Station (where the Green and Brown lines would terminate).

like several people have mentioned....these lines aren't going to the intermodal.

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Probably the "Brown Line". I think using colors for lines is easier because you can merge them over onto other lines easier (maps and stuff). I think they should have the Southeast (Green) and East End/Harrisburg (Brown) go north once they hit the Red Line to the Intermodel Station. That way, someone on the Northside can catch a train and make it to U of H without having to transfer, except for at the Intermodel Station (where the Green and Brown lines would terminate).

I'm sorry if I sound a bit glib about this, but do you think LULAC(I'm i'm not fond of, by the way) would have a bit of a heart attack about that particular color suggested for that line? It would be akin to having the Southeast line be the "Black" line.

in fact, I'd love to be in the office of the LULAC president if he reads this suggestion and rate his conniption with no small amount of glee if he keels over resulting in an absolutely lovely case of apoplexy.

But, hey, that's just me.

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like several people have mentioned....these lines aren't going to the intermodal.

I know they are not. I was just making something up that I think could work. Is it a crime to you now to have ideas?

I'm sorry if I sound a bit glib about this, but do you think LULAC(I'm i'm not fond of, by the way) would have a bit of a heart attack about that particular color suggested for that line? It would be akin to having the Southeast line be the "Black" line. in fact, I'd love to be in the office of the LULAC president if he reads this suggestion and rate his conniption with no small amount of glee if he keels over resulting in an absolutely lovely case of apoplexy. But, hey, that's just me.
Didn't realize that :lol: . That is the color of the line on METRO's rail maps. Edited by Trae
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I'm sorry if I sound a bit glib about this, but do you think LULAC(I'm i'm not fond of, by the way) would have a bit of a heart attack about that particular color suggested for that line? It would be akin to having the Southeast line be the "Black" line.

But, hey, that's just me.

Can imagine what the line into Gulfton area might be named. Blood line perhaps ;)

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Guest danax
I'm sorry if I sound a bit glib about this, but do you think LULAC(I'm i'm not fond of, by the way) would have a bit of a heart attack about that particular color suggested for that line? It would be akin to having the Southeast line be the "Black" line.

in fact, I'd love to be in the office of the LULAC president if he reads this suggestion and rate his conniption with no small amount of glee if he keels over resulting in an absolutely lovely case of apoplexy.

But, hey, that's just me.

If it is called the Brown Line, let's see if Sylvia Garcia jumps in. Actually she might like the name.

Maybe we should just call it the 1836 line, since it will run through the historic cradle of Houston. B)

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Can imagine what the line into Gulfton area might be named. Blood line perhaps ;)

I know what you mean. ;)

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For those that are interested in the ongoing saga...

East End Corridor Back on Track

Statement of City Council Member James Rodriguez

After meeting with METRO CEO and President Frank Wilson and the Gulf Coast Freight Rail District this past Friday (April 4, 2008) afternoon, I am pleased to announce that the East End Corridor is back on track with the Magnolia Transit Center as its destination. It has been previously reported that because of grade separation issues at the former Houston Belt & Terminal Railway tracks, now owned by Union Pacific Railroad, the East End Corridor line would end at Harrisburg between 65th and Oldham - a location that is totally unacceptable to the community. I am glad that we are now all on the same page and are committed to Magnolia in this first phase.

The completion of the corridor to Magnolia will take time, money and a strong partnership between METRO, the Gulf Coast Freight Rail District, the City of Houston and other governmental entities. I, along with METRO and the Gulf Coast Freight Rail District are committed to working together to move this project forward. I want to thank the Gulf Coast Freight Rail District for coming to the table to help us construct the corridor that was originally promised to my constituents.

Meanwhile, I have discussed my constituent's concerns about the Southeast and University corridors and have asked METRO for a thorough follow-up on those matters. I will consider supporting METRO's Consent Agreement once those issues have been satisfactorily addressed and/or resolved.

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I was unable to find a "East" line, just "southeast" (Green line). Merge if there is already one, please.

With the beginning (scheduled) of the line starting this friday, a couple of interesting articles have come up on chron.com

One is that for the most part, the only problems people seem to have is the Service and Inspection Facility, which is supposed to be on land already owned by Metro just south of Harrisburg on the other side of the freight tracks. Some locals are trying to convince Metro to use the Hardy yards instead. Article.

The other Article seems to me like they're reading not only this forum, but the one on Chron.com about the various arguments. Should be good for a laugh, but it also gives quite a bit of good information.

Finally, went to metrosolutions.org and pulled up the latest map they have on there and I think the stations they have so far on there would serve that area well....now if they could only go further on down to park place in the future.....

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Let's get this show on the road. I was downright giddy seeing the orange spray paint all over Harrisburg this morning. The anxiety over the maintenance facility is much ado about nothing.

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I don't understand the opposition to the service yard. Considering all the other industry, the freight rail yards, the crap up and down Harrisburg, especially all the autobus companies, it's not as if it's going to ruin the view.

People need to teach their little knee-biters not to play in the streets or on the railroad tracks, instead of whining to Metro to come teach about light rail safety in school, which I understand has been a topic of conversation at the super neighborhood meetings.

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"Brown Line"?! Is that Metro's designation, or simply what some kid wrote in Wikipedia? (Was the name revealed in a vision he had in about 5th grade during a visit to Atlanta?)

Edited by pestofan

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I don't understand the opposition to the service yard. Considering all the other industry, the freight rail yards, the crap up and down Harrisburg, especially all the autobus companies, it's not as if it's going to ruin the view.

the opposition involved a supposed mixed use development at the same site. they'd rather have that than a METRO freight yard.

People need to teach their little knee-biters not to play in the streets or on the railroad tracks, instead of whining to Metro to come teach about light rail safety in school, which I understand has been a topic of conversation at the super neighborhood meetings.

the eastwood contingent was quite vocal on this but when property owners were being offered $3/sq ft for their property, they were quite silent.

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I think METRO needs to take a page out of DART's book, and organize the MetroSolutions website better. The maps DART has are very east to get to and read. METRO's are all PDF's. METRO's site is good, just could be better.

Edited by Trae

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the opposition involved a supposed mixed use development at the same site. they'd rather have that than a METRO freight yard.

the eastwood contingent was quite vocal on this but when property owners were being offered $3/sq ft for their property, they were quite silent.

There's never been a peep about mixed use anything on that site, until now. I just don't buy it. However I completely agree that people should demand the value of their property. Have a friend who is going through this now with a house on the proposed North Line.

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There's never been a peep about mixed use anything on that site, until now. I just don't buy it.
i'm with you...it's more rumor than truth IMO. nothing was ever definitive.

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"Brown Line"?! Is that Metro's designation, or simply what some kid wrote in Wikipedia? (Was the name revealed in a vision he had in about 5th grade during a visit to Atlanta?)

Brown has been the color of choice on METRO's maps. I think it'd be perfect, ese.

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Brown has been the color of choice on METRO's maps. I think it'd be perfect, ese.

LOL.

When I first found out it was brown, I was stunned and thought it was someone's bad idea of a joke, considering the neighborhood is heavily hispanic.

I'm still not sure if I should be offended, but now I find it funny. I just hope some LULAC idiot does't take issue with it.

Ricco = Brown Dude.

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"Brown Line"?! Is that Metro's designation, or simply what some kid wrote in Wikipedia? (Was the name revealed in a vision he had in about 5th grade during a visit to Atlanta?)

Brown Line has been on METRO maps for a while. So has Green for the Southeast Line, etc.

And is there a brown line in Atlanta? I don't think so. They call their lines "North-South" and "East-West".

Edited by Trae

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the opposition involved a supposed mixed use development at the same site. they'd rather have that than a METRO freight yard.

the eastwood contingent was quite vocal on this but when property owners were being offered $3/sq ft for their property, they were quite silent.

$3/sq ft?...sounds underpriced...I don't oppose the rail line...just the service facility...still have mixed feelings regarding the overpass...but adding the service facility would only make the area more industrial. I understand that the East End has been historically industrial, but the EEMD is trying to change that and applaud their efforts.

Edited by CHiPs

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$3/sq ft?...sounds underpriced...I don't oppose the rail line...just the service facility...still have mixed feelings regarding the overpass...but adding the service facility would only make the area more industrial. I understand that the East End has been historically industrial, but the EEMD is trying to change that and applaud their efforts.

I am curious about it, though..

Is this just going to service the Brown line or the SouthEast line? If so,it is a logical place for it.

The S&I facility shouldn't be that big of a deal considering that (I think) that it will be located adjacent to the railyards.

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Brown has been the color of choice on METRO's maps. I think it'd be perfect, ese.

No surprise after METRO announced the "black line" (SE Line) and the "white line" (Richmond).

The Original Timmy Chan wants to know when we will get the yellow line!!!

:o

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There's never been a peep about mixed use anything on that site, until now. I just don't buy it.

I think that they were viewing the property in the light of what it could potentially be placed there once rail and gentrifying forces worked their magic, but were either misrepresented or inarticulate. But in light of that the site is actually bounded by active freight rails on two sides and that the overpass ruins visibility and accessibility, I'm not sure that housing or retail would ever be appropriate for the site.

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$3/sq ft?...sounds underpriced...I don't oppose the rail line...just the service facility...still have mixed feelings regarding the overpass...but adding the service facility would only make the area more industrial. I understand that the East End has been historically industrial, but the EEMD is trying to change that and applaud their efforts.

$3 isn't necessarily bad for a site that large. And I have to wonder whether it can pass a Phase II environmental study; the price could ultimately come down.

I vaguely recall having heard from someone that the Central City Industrial Park has deed restrictions preventing residential land uses, though. And since retail there is out of the question, it doesn't leave many options.

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sure isn't the going rate.

I'm not sure that there is any such thing as a 'going rate' along older commercial streets, like Harrisburg. Different lot sizes and configurations, prominence on corners, railroad tracks, and numerous amenities (Eastwood Park) and disamenities (bus stations) make the valuation of each individual parcel kind of a chore.

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I'm not sure that there is any such thing as a 'going rate' along older commercial streets, like Harrisburg. Different lot sizes and configurations, prominence on corners, railroad tracks, and numerous amenities (Eastwood Park) and disamenities (bus stations) make the valuation of each individual parcel kind of a chore.

but the avg is at least double digits. i know a couple of investors who hawk the east side.

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but the avg is at least double digits. i know a couple of investors who hawk the east side.

Yeah, you're correct about that. But this is just a particularly unattractive and large site with relatively little Harrisburg frontage. The price will be much, much lower.

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It's just like the protestor's were saying to the media. Seems this thing will come through no matter what you do or say.

Harrisburg is already a hellish tight squeeze as you pass through now, imagine with this thing coming through? Any bordering streets will be getting the cars/trucks going around this thing to get to where they need to get to. Remove all children from your neighborhoods now! Then there are those halfway houses for drunks futher down. Will be very interesting.

As long as they dont hurt Lenox Barbecue. :blush:

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Harrisburg is already a hellish tight squeeze as you pass through now, imagine with this thing coming through? Any bordering streets will be getting the cars/trucks going around this thing to get to where they need to get to.

That's why Harrisburg will be widened. I'm all for it, if nothing else because otherwise the overpass over the train tracks will probably never be built. The 50 is practically useless as a bus route in part because it's stuck behind the damn train half the time. I live two miles from my job but have to drive or bike there because I never know if the 50 will get me to work five minutes early or twenty minutes late.

Edited by arisegundo

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That's why Harrisburg will be widened. I'm all for it, if nothing else because otherwise the overpass over the train tracks will probably never be built. The 50 is practically useless as a bus route in part because it's stuck behind the damn train half the time. I live two miles from my job but have to drive or bike there because I never know if the 50 will get me to work five minutes early or twenty minutes late.

I'm a Eastview resident and wondering how it will affect my area...traffic-wise...There's already a shopping strip 25 ft from the RR...I was excited to see that, now if only Central City would be demo'd and have a nice park instead...(in my dreams right?) ^_^

Edited by CHiPs

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sure isn't the going rate.

Wow, man $ 3 bucks darn you can't even buy a gallon of gasoline for $3 bucks, that would put a damper on things if I was a land owner there if I didn't want to sell.

As for the over pass I am all for it. Man I live in the area. Last time I almost pulled my hair out. I kid you not, I got stuck waiting on a train on Telephone, then on the tracks by Lockwood/Harrisburg, and then again at the Harrisburge right by the darn Family Dollar. That day was horrible, and I remember saying why the hell they don't just build a freaking overpass to avoid this kind of crap. I will love this overpass.

I grew up in DH moved to the suburbs and now I moved back. Screw the high taxes, long comute. The area I live in is being rebuild and up and coming with lofts and condos. So high property taxes are around the corner but what the heck so is my job. Love it DT is only 7 minutes away.

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With the rail coming in, will you ride it into Downtown for work?

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What is the big deal with the service facility anyway? How is that out of place there? I hope everyone understands that the whole East End has pretty much been an industrial/blue collar area for generations. And suddenly they're too good for a maintenance shed? Spare us. Isn't this basically over there on Harrisburg by Thunderbolt and the RR tracks and whatnot?

I can understand why some people scared of being gentrified out would oppose the rail line, but I don't understand the problem with this facility. Yes, it could go over in the Hardy Rail Yards, but when the rail system gets big enough there will probably need to be more than one service facility. It makes sense to have one there. Isn't the Hardy Rail Yards where the Intermodal station is supposed to be?

Edited by BrewsterMcCloud

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Yes, the Hardy Rail Yards is where the Intermodal Station is suppose to be. Metro has renderings of the service facility. Go to their website and click on the Metro Solutions link. It is right there on the front.

It would be nice if Metro could maybe go with some red-brick, old town railroad theme with the facility. Have it blend in.

Edited by Trae

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Yes, it could go over in the Hardy Rail Yards, but when the rail system gets big enough there will probably need to be more than one service facility. It makes sense to have one there. Isn't the Hardy Rail Yards where the Intermodal station is supposed to be?

Hardy Yards is more expensive dirt. It'd be crazy to put a service facility there.

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Well, it appears that they are going to have a ground breaking on Thursday. A ceremonial one, but I'll take what I can get. Construction is going to start between Milby and Lockwood in 4000ft segments.

One thing I either forgot or didn't know about is that the East Side and Uptown lines are going to be completely funded by Metro.

Article.

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Well, it appears that they are going to have a ground breaking on Thursday. A ceremonial one, but I'll take what I can get. Construction is going to start between Milby and Lockwood in 4000ft segments.

One thing I either forgot or didn't know about is that the East Side and Uptown lines are going to be completely funded by Metro.

Article.

We're finally getting somewhere. This really is a ground-breaking achievement in and of itself!

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That's why Harrisburg will be widened. I'm all for it, if nothing else because otherwise the overpass over the train tracks will probably never be built. The 50 is practically useless as a bus route in part because it's stuck behind the damn train half the time. I live two miles from my job but have to drive or bike there because I never know if the 50 will get me to work five minutes early or twenty minutes late.

Right on!

I am all for it too! Remove all the sleazy red light bars that have plagued (and caused misery) to that area for generations! :angry:

There was an excellent long story (in the Hou Press) of a long time resident that described his typical plight of the hellish and excruciating time it takes for those trains to pass exactly where you stated. If caught at RR tracks at Polk/Harrisburg/Lawndale you can wait for about 30-45 minutes and thats on a good day. Problem, residents do not speak up, renters do not care. Ok flame is lit...truth there it is. Peace, love and all that jazz!

Edited by Vertigo58

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Is it just the rail line that is getting the overpass, or the entire road?

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Let's get this show on the road. I was downright giddy seeing the orange spray paint all over Harrisburg this morning. The anxiety over the maintenance facility is much ado about nothing.

That would be cool if someone started taking photos, from start to finish.

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