Chris Bortz spilled the real reason to reporter Barry Horstman in this Enquirer Article:
Bortz added that the streetcars are "envisioned to attract a different kind of rider" - so-called "choice riders" who use public transit more as a lifestyle choice than because of economic or logistical necessity. "To a large extent, I don't think the streetcars and buses would draw from the same passenger pool."That's a nice way of putting it. Basically that code language means the streetcar will allow well-heeled professionals in these gentrified areas to elude their bus-bound inferiors. Think of it as "separate but equal" transit.
Here it is again in plain english:
"In a city where it's hard as hell to get reliable cab service and bootlegs can be found at any Kroger in the city - how does this help inner city families without cars get to better jobs in the suburbs? Or home with their groceries? Or to pick up kids from daycare or attend an evening school or church program?If we're going to spend public money on public transit, then it should benefit the public, not just a favored few. The best way to ensure this is to subject it to a public vote. Enact the streetcar charter amendment.
It doesn't. The streetcar doesn't address ANY real issues with transportation that people need solved. That's why so many folks, particularly black folks are against it. To the working poor the streetcar IS seen as amusement or novelty item because it has no earthly use for them. Worse, it's also seen as a way for white people to avoid them altogether on "their" streetcar while the backwards and lackluster Metro system will never be improved or updated for the working poor.
These perceptions aren't going to go away - partly because they're true and partly because there is no way to make working poor folks see that they won't be stuck with the bill for something they won't use."
-ThatDeborahGirl comment on Urbanophile Blog