By Tim Farley
Almost everything Oklahoma City residents wanted to know about streetcars but were afraid to ask was covered during a May 9 public forum at the Ronald J. Norick Downtown Library.
Organized as a way to inform, educate and clear up misconceptions about the MAPS 3-funded project, city officials and their paid consultants delivered a bevy of facts and figures that centered on previous studies, future construction and success stories from other cities.
Mike McAnelly, senior planner and project manager for Jacobs Engineering Group, said cities that have integrated streetcars into their mass-transit plans have witnessed increased ridership each year, at an average hike of about 12 percent.
"Every emerging community in the country is investing in the future of their city, and part of that is having a good public transportation system," he said.