I didn't see a thread dedicated to the QLine, so I thought I'd open a discussion. (Mods, please move this post to the appropriate thread if necessary.)
I've yet to try the QLine, but I hope I'll have time when I visit Detroit in early August. From what I've read in articles and comment sections, the overall response is a combination of excitement and frustration. The QLine is Detroit's first streetcar since 1956, and in an area designed for roads, any rail project is big news. It's shiny, it's urban, it's expensive, and it's part of the (uncoordinated) effort to rehabilitate the core of Detroit: New Center-Downtown.
And it takes over 30 minutes to travel just 3.3 miles.
But I'm hesitant to call it a boondoggle. Expectations have been high since the original M-1 concept was released. Compared to that plan, yes, the QLine is a disappointment. The slow speed is a valid concern. Future signaling improvements at intersections and a general rise in average auto driver IQ will likely shave off 10 minutes or so.
I applaud the QLine, and of course, I get all the criticism. It certainly falls far short, at least for now, of what a real mass transit system should be. But it's a start, a training wheel of sorts for a local culture that has so long rejected mass transit.
I agree with Lengel's assessment. The QLine falls far short for me. I would've liked to see a light rail line connecting the Pontiac-Detroit M-1 corridor (à la Wolverine), but I know anything resembling that would be a couple decades out at least. For now, I'm hopeful for the QLine's success and momentum for extensions/expansions/improvements.
I'm curious if any AU members have taken the QLine, and if so, what your experience and impressions were.
Edited by Pere Flyer, 24 June 2017 - 11:55 PM.