Sunday, February 14, 2010

The Transit Idea Box

Idea 1: Make Cobo a regional transit hub
With the possibility of the Red Wings building a new arena in Detroit, a lot of real estate will open up near Cobo Center. Cobo’s new authority is also actively putting together plans to expand Cobo for the auto show. Why not make Cobo a regional transit hub that connects to the airport and to Oakland County, following the corridors of Michigan Ave/I-94 and I-75 respectively? Taking it a step further, if Cobo were a transit hub that allowed people to access not only downtown and the region, could Detroit build a gondola across the river to Windsor so that Canadian residents can better access our facilities and jobs?

Idea 2: Integrate Toronto – Chicago High Speed Rail with new Border Crossing and Old Train Station along Michigan Ave.
Detroit occupies a unique geographic position between Toronto (Canada’s largest city) and Chicago (the 3rd most populous city in the United States). Why not integrate high-speed rail between these two corridors through the development of a border-crossing that will accompany such trains? Why not utilize the old train station along Michigan Ave as a hub for high-speed rail? If you can also integrate Detroit Metro Airport into this corridor to create an “airrailtropolis” (a term I credit to Rick Sheridan of Menlo), the importance of our airport to the Midwest will only grow.

Idea 3: Jefferson-Conner-Outer Drive to 8 Mile Bus Rapid Transit
If you look at an overview of where density is on Detroit’s eastside, it is along the Connor-Outer Drive Corridor. Why not build a bus rapid transit system that goes from downtown along Jefferson, turns left at Connor, and then follows Outer Drive all the way to 8 mile where it connects with another regional transit corridor? This type of system could create more density along this corridor and truly unite the eastside of Detroit.

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