Hearing set on River Rail expansion study | Arkansas Blog

Hearing set on River Rail expansion study



Metroplan has scheduled an open house from 4 to 6 p.m. Tuesday, August 30, at its offices at 501 W. Markham to consider a study with recommendations on expansion of the River Rail streetcar system.

One person following the issue had objected to a short public comment period for a report that had not been released to the public until today. Jim McKenzie, Metroplan director, said, however, that the comment period will last for two weeks, though it begins with the Aug. 30 event.

Actually implementing the plan is another matter. That would take time and money, whichever option is chosen (a variety of expansions in Little Rock and North Little Rock, including one to the airport, were considered). River Rail is a frequent bone of local contention on account of small ridership (a bit more than 100,000 riders annually), though many see it as a positive civic amenity that could have great commuter ridership with more miles of track serving residential development.

Here's the notice of the hearing, with a map showing potential alternatives for route extensions.

A draft of the report — subject to changes by a local steering committee and public comment — has now been posted on the Metroplan website. Tell us what you think.

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