We Don't Need Another QLine

May 14, 2020

In a recent Crain’s Detroit Business article on the new DDOT Director, Mikel Ogelsby, Mayor Duggan frontlines the idea of an expansion of light rail as part of the new directors responsibilities.

We do not need another Q Line (light rail) on Jefferson or Michigan, we need buses back on time, service restored, and riders & drivers safe.  When bus riders are waiting hours for the Jefferson #9 on weekends prior to Covid 19, what we need is better service.

We are concerned that this focus on light rail development distracts from the need to restore bus service in majority black neighborhoods that serve essential workers. These are workers who remain employed during this pandemic/public health crisis and need better service.  We cannot neglect essential bus riders and their families further siphoning our public funds to more failed private development deals.

We need buses back on time, service restored, and riders & drivers safe! The QLine is not a post-pandemic priority for Detroiters, just more of the same. 

Link (behind firewall, so we’ve quoted below)https://www.crainsdetroit.com/people/detroits-new-public-transportation-director-comes-south-florida-boston-transit-programs

Duggan: “”I also think it’s within the realm of possibility, depending what happens in the national elections, there could be a national infrastructure bill that could have the potential for light rail,” Duggan said, and wants Detroit to be “ready if the opportunity presents itself, whether it’s on Jefferson (Avenue), whether it’s on Michigan (Avenue), we’re looking at a lot of different choices.”

Ogelsby: “I’ve dealt with a lot of capital projects. I’ve started them from the ground up,” Oglesby said. “I believe in creativity. But more importantly, I think, one thing that’s happening here that we really have to focus in on is the safety of the rider and the safety of the operators. So when we come in it’s not just going to be all innovation, it’s going to be getting the base solid.”

Community: “Some activists have spoken for the need for DDOT to ramp up service so essential workers aren’t forced onto overcrowded buses. Calls have also been made, including by Detroit City Council, for a low-income fair pilot program. DDOT said in an April memo to council that it did not recommend it. DDOT has a reduced-fare program for seniors, those with disabilities, students and Medicare recipients, it said, and said the city could not afford the pressure that would cause on the its general fund.”