Nearby Commercial Interests May Be Asked to Fund D.C. Streetcar System

Washington D.C.'s planned 37-mile streetcar system will be a boon to nearby businesses, according to a recent report. As a result, the mayor is pushing a plan that would ask commercial property owners to help fund the system.

"A BID-commissioned study by the Brookings Institution, Robert Charles Lesser & Co. (RCLCO) and Reconnecting America, a transit advocacy group, suggests that streetcars would increase the value of the revenue-producing commercial properties along H Street and Benning Road Northeast by $1.1 billion over 20 years.

'Anytime you can make transportation much more convenient and establish fixed connections from place to place, you are automatically going to increase value,' said Shyam Kannan, an RCLCO vice president."

The city is proposing that the business owners taking in the benefits of the $1.5 billion system play a role in its funding. Various ideas are being floated, including a special tax district and increased zoning fees.

Full Story: Commercial property owners may be asked to pay for part of streetcar costs

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