Ask Not For Whom The Bell Clangs
It clangs not for thee, according to Kansas City Mayor Sly James.
If you are reading this, the streetcar is not for you. In a Feb. 13 interview on KCUR radio, James said the following:
We need people to understand, a lot of the folks who are against this [streetcar expansion] are people who have been vested here, they’re already here. They’ve lived most of their lives if not close to all of it [here]. We’re not building this city for them. We’re building this city for the next 75 years.
Not only is the streetcar not for people in Kansas City; voters ought to discount the views of Kansas Citians exactly because they are from Kansas City. In the same interview, James said:
And despite people’s objections, despite their willingness to look at it in some instances, when we’re out looking for talent to come to this city, they’re not looking for some place where they can drive all around town, they are demanding public transportation.
Got that, Kansas City taxpayers? The streetcar is not for you, it is for others, either in the future or those who live somewhere else. You’ll just be paying for it. Planning ahead for city growth and seeking to attract new citizens are noble goals. The problem is that nothing in the research about streetcars indicates that it accomplishes either.