- Associated Press - Monday, May 11, 2015

DETROIT (AP) - The nonprofit Detroit RiverFront Conservancy is preparing to raise $3 million to help fund a transportation system along the Detroit River that includes water taxis and trolley buses.

The conservancy hired Michigan-based Freshwater Transit to study the feasibility of such a system, The Detroit News reported (https://bit.ly/1Itiukv ). Based on the research, the conservancy proposed a plan for six water taxi stations and 14 trolley stops from West Riverfront Park to Gabriel Richard Park.

Stops would include Belle Isle, the island park located in the Detroit River, as well as Cobo Center and the Renaissance Center.

William Smith, the conservancy’s chief financial officer, said the first phase of the water taxi route would use six existing docks or access points along the river. Suggested fares would be $1 for a trolley ride and $7.50 for taxi service. Prices would be lower for senior citizens and children.

“We have a lot of dock space that we control or our partners control,” Smith said. “It made sense to be able to allow folks other opportunities to travel along the riverfront.”

The project needs $3 million in capital investment, Smith said. It has a fundraising goal of $4.25 million, and an eye toward launching in 2016. Funding would purchase up to three water taxis and up to four trolleys and add signage, as well as for first-year operational costs.

The trolley route is designed to give riders access to water taxis and to tie into existing transit offerings such as the People Mover, bus routes and the Dequindre Cut bicycling and pedestrian pathway, as well the M-1 Rail line that is under construction.





Information from: The Detroit News, https://detnews.com/

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