Downtown Riverfront StreetcarSacramento, CaliforniaSmall Starts Project Development(Rating Assigned November 2015)Summary DescriptionProposed Project: Streetcar4.2 Miles, 16 StationsTotal Capital Cost ( YOE): 150.00 MillionSection 5309 Small Starts Share ( YOE): 74.99 Million (50.0%)Annual Operating Cost (opening year 2019): 3.50 Million2,800 Daily Linked TripsCurrent Year Ridership Forecast (2012):1,000,200 Annual Linked TripsHorizon Year Ridership Forecast (2035):7,600 Daily Linked Trips2,600,300 Annual Linked TripsOverall Project Rating: Medium-HighProject Justification Rating: MediumLocal Financial Commitment Rating: HighProject Description: The Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG), in collaborationwith the Sacramento Regional Transit District (RT), City of Sacramento, City of WestSacramento, and Yolo County Transportation District, proposes to construct a streetcar linebetween West Sacramento and the Midtown District in Sacramento. The project includes theconstruction of 16 stations and an operation and maintenance facility as well as the purchase ofsix streetcars. Local officials plan to establish a new nonprofit organization comprised ofSACOG, the two cities, and the two transit operators that would establish fares, budget,security, etc. RT will operate the service every 15 minutes on weekdays and every 20 minuteson weekday evenings and weekends.Project Purpose: The project would serve major destinations in the urban cores of WestSacramento and Sacramento, facilitate transit-oriented infill development in several designatedareas along the route, and improve transit service and local circulation between the two cities.Key destinations along the project corridor include an Amtrak station, the convention center, thestate capitol, a new sports/entertainment arena currently under construction, and a minorleague baseball stadium.Project Development History, Status and Next Steps: SACOG and its project partnersincluded the locally preferred alternative in the region’s fiscally-constrained long rangetransportation plan in April 2012. The project entered Small Starts Project Development inMay 2014. Local officials anticipate completing the environmental review process with receipt ofa Finding of No Significant Impact in spring 2016, receiving a Small Starts Grant Agreement inspring 2017, and starting revenue service in December 2019.Significant Changes Since November 2014: The planned relocation of a segment of RT’sexisting Blue light rail line was removed from the streetcar project’s scope because thatsegment will be funded as a separate project. The capital cost was reduced from
165.93 million to 150.0 million as a result. The requested Small Starts amount remainedunchanged, increasing the share from 45 percent to 50 percent.Locally Proposed Financial PlanSource of FundsTotal Funds ( million)Percent of TotalFederal:Section 5309 Small Starts 74.9950.0%State:General Funds 10.006.7%Local:City of West Sacramento Sales Tax 25.0016.6% 30.0020.0%City of Sacramento (General Funds) 7.004.7%Sacramento County (General Funds) 3.02.0% 150.00100.0%City of Sacramento (Benefit AssessmentDistrict)Total:NOTE: The financial plan reflected in this table has been developed by the project sponsor and does not reflect a commitmentby DOT or FTA. The sum of the figures may differ from the total as listed due to rounding.
Downtown Riverfront StreetcarSacramento, CaliforniaSmall Starts Project Development(Rating Assigned November 2015)LAND USE RATING: MediumThe land use rating reflects population and employment densities within ½-mile of proposed station areas, aswell as the share of legally binding affordability restricted housing in the corridor compared to the share in thesurrounding county(ies). The existing population of the corridor is 16,200 with a density of 3,600 people per square mile, whichcorresponds with a Medium-Low rating by FTA guidelines. Existing employment in the corridor is85,000, corresponding to a Medium rating by FTA guidelines. Other high trip generators include aconvention center, professional basketball arena, minor league baseball stadium, and other civic, arts,and entertainment uses. Daily parking in downtown Sacramento costs 15 on average, correspondingto a Medium-High rating. The proportion of legally binding affordability restricted housing in the project corridor compared to theproportion in the counties through which the project travels is 10.48, which rates High according to FTAbenchmarks. Downtown Sacramento includes mid and high-rise office, residential, and hotel uses on a grid streetsystem with generally short building setbacks and structured parking. The West Sacramento stationareas contain a diverse mix of land uses, including a civic center, small-lot residential neighborhoods,commercial/light industrial development, and a considerable amount of vacant land that is planned forredevelopment. Pedestrian infrastructure in West Sacramento is not consistent but has been improvedrecently.ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT RATING: Medium-HighTransit-Supportive Plans and Policies: Medium-High Transit-Supportive Corridor Policies: The City of Sacramento 2035 General Plan includes citywidegoals and policies to support infill development, redevelopment, transit-oriented development, compactneighborhoods, and growth in the downtown and urban centers. Specific plans address three largeredevelopent areas (about 200 acres or more each) in Sacramento and West Sacramento and includedensity and design guidelines to support high-density, mixed-use urban infill. Design guidelines havealso been created to improve walkability in the West Sacramento CBD.Supportive Zoning Regulations Near Transit Stations: Adopted zoning regulations in Sacramento andWest Sacramento support residential and commercial densities in the medium to high range, mixed-usedevelopment, and reduced or eliminated parking requirements. Larger than ideal setback requirementsin West Sacramento contrast with other design regulations that are largely transit-supportive.Tools to Implement Land Use Policies: Regional agencies have undertaken a variety of outreach effortsin support of TOD, including developing TOD guidelines, although efforts specifically in the streetcarcorridor were not identified. In the West Sacramento Bridge and Washington Districts, property ownershave been involved in an extensive public-private collaboration over several years to develop jointfunding mechanisms for infrastructure improvements and to develop regulatory incentives to supportredevelopment of these areas in a transit oriented pattern.Performance and Impacts of Policies: Medium-High Performance of Land Use Policies: Mixed-use development (primarily residential) has been occurring indowntown Sacramento over the past decade at a moderate but accelerating pace. Development isbeginning to take place in West Sacramento’s Bridge and Washington Districts now that initialinfrastructure improvements have been made. These projects are high-density (consistent with districtplans) and walkable.Potential Impact of Transit Investment on Regional Land Use: There are substantial developmentopportunities on large-scale infill sites encompassing at least 500 acres of developable land. Thestreetcar corridor in downtown Sacramento includes numerous other opportunities for smaller-scaleintensification of uses.
Tools to Maintain or Increase Share of Affordable Housing: Medium The City of Sacramento has an inclusionary housing ordinance and an affordable housing trust fund;over 85 properties in the ½ mile station areas currently have deed restrictions. Three recentlycompleted projects serving very and extremely low income households have more than 50 years left ontheir regulatory agreements.West Sacramento’s state financing for Bridge District infrastructure requires that the city create at least500 affordable housing units. To date, 70 units have been constructed and 77 are proposed. Theseunits will be income-restricted for a 55-year period.
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The Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG), in collaboration with the Sacramento Regional Transit District (RT), City of Sacramento, City of West Sacramento, and Yolo County Transportation District, proposes to construct a streetcar line between West Sacramento and the Midtown District