Streetcar On Time and On Budget
The Hop was on time and "almost balanced to the dime," officials note.
City officials won’t be criticized on at least two issues when the ever-controversial streetcar starts service on November 2nd. The Hop will launch both on time and on budget.
A Thursday afternoon project update meeting featured a breakdown of estimated and actual expenses. Patrick J. Flaherty of the Concord Group, the city’s owner’s representative, detailed how construction has gone on the $99.24 million first phase. He told the streetcar implementation committee that $79.77 million has been spent to date.
Flaherty cautioned the panel not to expect the project to come in substantially under budget. Even though the city already has all five vehicles from manufacturer Transdev, it has only paid $8.33 million of a $19.46 million contract. The remaining funds for Brookville and many other vendors are based on “highly specific milestone payments that they need to hit targets on,” said Flaherty.
One other issue left to resolve is the utility relocation cost. “We still have final reconciliation,” said Flaherty. The city has spent $8.35 million out of a budgeted $11.81 million. Flaherty noted that We Energies was budgeted to receive over $9 million originally, with “seven to eight” other telecommunication companies splitting the remaining $2 million.
Said Alderman Robert Bauman: “I think the execution of the construction of the infrastructure was extremely well managed. Obviously the financial results are almost almost balanced to the dime, which is quite extraordinary for a public works project of substantial size.”
Bauman, a streetcar champion, also singled out the utility cost. He said that when the project was approved in 2011, We Energies and other utilities estimated a collective relocation cost in excess of $60 million. The downtown alderman said that if today’s figure was known, “we could have resolved that in a couple months.” Bauman estimated that the project could have opened three years ago if not for the years of delay encountered as a result of the utility issue.
In addition to being on budget, the project is slated to open on time. Make that nearly two weeks early. A request for proposals to operate the streetcar, ultimately won by Transdev, envisioned service starting by November 15th, 2018. The streetcar, now known as The Hop presented by Potawatomi Hotel & Casino, will begin operating on November 2nd at 1 p.m.
The project’s second phase, extending to the lakefront, is expected to open in 2020, later than the original “late 2019” estimate due to delays associated with the financing of The Couture apartment tower. The two streetcar lines have a combined budget of $128 million.
- Construction: $49.58 million (spent: $48.89 million)
- Utilities: $11.81 million (spent: $8.35 million)
- Vehicles: $19.46 million (spent: $8.33 million)
- Professional services: $15.04 million (spent: $12.05 million)
- Owner contingency/escalation: $3.35 million (spent: $2.15 million)
- Total: $99.25 million (spent: $79.77 million)
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For more project details, including the project timeline, financing, route and possible extensions, see our extensive past coverage.
- Plats and Parcels: Lakefront Streetcar Extension Scheduled for June 2022 Opening - Jeramey Jannene - Dec 6th, 2020
- Transportation: Should Milwaukee Stop The Hop? - Jeramey Jannene - Oct 13th, 2020
- Transportation: The Hop Now Wears a Mask - Jeramey Jannene - Aug 18th, 2020
- Eyes on Milwaukee: Is A Couture Deal Finally Coming? - Jeramey Jannene - May 13th, 2020
- Transportation: SUV Driver Runs Into The Hop - Jeramey Jannene - Feb 28th, 2020
- Transportation: Streetcar Kiosks Could Bring In $500,000 Annually - Jeramey Jannene - Feb 20th, 2020
- Thanks A Million, Hop Riders! - The Hop - Feb 19th, 2020
- Transportation: We Energies Will Sponsor Streetcar - Jeramey Jannene - Feb 10th, 2020
- Transportation: Streetcar Ridership Up in January Versus 2019 - Jeramey Jannene - Feb 7th, 2020
- Transportation: Streetcar Ridership Up in December - Jeramey Jannene - Jan 14th, 2020
Read more about Milwaukee Streetcar here