How many inventions skip a century and come back stronger than ever? Streetcars are making a huge comeback, as they have been identified as contributing to sustainability initiatives. Streetcar systems hit the mark as far as balancing economic, environmental and social equity factors.
What we know today is that streetcars and pedestrians have a unique and symbiotic relationship. Due to better audiovisual communication, pedestrians feel less threatened by streetcars. Unlike with buses, automobiles, or even cyclists, pedestrians easily can comprehend the predictable path and pace of a streetcar. Streetcar passengers and pedestrians on a sidewalk are basically at the same eye level to each other, which tends to translate into a safer sense of equality between the modes.
Using a context-sensitive urban design approach, WRT has been at the forefront of building advocacy for streetcar planning and design—even in auto-centric Dallas. And, by proactively approaching stakeholders, WRT has had success in building advocacy for new streetcar routes.