Wednesday, December 14, 2011

WBJ: $8.7 Million for Two Streetcars

The Washington Business Journal reports that the District plans to spend $8.7 million to buy two streetcars from a Portland based firm. Both of the streetcars are for the H Street line, and each car can carry 144 passengers.


Anonymous said...

So what happened to the streetcars bought from the Czech Republic? I thought they were stored in Baltimore. No DDOT decides to "Buy American". F- DDOT!

inked said...

DDOT bought 3 cars from the Czech company. The Portland based company came in with a lower bid for the two new cars.

Anonymous said...

Two different types of cars on the same line? Sounds like a bad way to open up the first line of DC's "new" light rail system.

Jared said...

@Anonymous: Why would two different cars be a bad way to open up the first line? Why did you put quotes around new?

@Anonymous: The cars bought from the Czech Republic still exist. They will also be used. Sometimes I buy the same things from more than one place as well.

Anonymous said...

Jared: "Why would two different cars be a bad way to open up the first line?"

Because when you're operating systems like this, it saves money if you can buy a repair parts in bulk, train mechanics on only one type of car, etc. Basically, economies of scale.

Anonymous said...

Jared, also the different cars also may require different parts and different skills for servicing them. I'm not talking about buying jeans from two different stores. The DC streetcar system will need to be marketed to get people to use it. A uniform look will help with that. And the quotes around "new" are there to imply a facetious tone -- DC has had a streetcar system in the past (so this is not new), and the current plans are already lagging years behind (again, not new if we've been anticipating for years).