The Seattle Metblog has a round up of the streetcar lines in proposal by the City. Its a nice round up, but I’d like to add a bit of politics to the conversation.
First Hill line
This is the line from the ID to Little Saigon and up Broadway to John or Aloha. This is in the Sound Transit proposal, so if the Son of Sound Transit 2 passes this November (vote yes, btw) it will include the First Hill streetcar.
This is line on First Avenue from Uptown to Pioneer Square. This the most likely line to get city funding first. The investment district that would be covered by the line is the largest, since it goes from the Seattle Center through Belltown and all of the Financial District. The problem with this line is that it would need to either clear all parking on First, or run in the center of the road, which would eliminate most lanes for driving. The ridership here is the largest.
This is the longest line, and thus the most expensive. It would continue up Weslake and travel through the Westlake neighborhood between Queen Anne and South Lake Union, across the Fremont bridge and through Fremont on to Downtown Ballard. The largest criticism I have of this routing is that it would endanger future Federal grants for light rail to Ballard since, though the same could be said of the Central Line through Belltown and Uptown.
This is actually the least likely line if Sound Transit 2 passes. The University district, the big destination, will be well served by Link, with a station at Husky Stadium and another at Brooklyn and 43rd. Don’t hold your horses on this.