QLine Streetcar to Begin Service in Motor City on May 12
DETROIT — The QLine, Detroit’s new streetcar system, will celebrate its grand opening on Friday, May 12 with a special event at the Penske Technical Center. The celebration will begin with a morning press conference featuring elected officials and dignitaries, and will be followed by an inaugural first ride down Woodward Avenue. The QLine will open to the public on Friday evening. Construction on the line began in July 2014. The QLine made its first test run on Woodward Avenue in December 2016 and the streetcar system has undergone over 1,000 tests in preparation for operations.
The economic impact of transit-oriented development is expected to top $3.5 billion within a decade and include a mix of 10,000 new residential units, offices and commercial projects near Woodward Avenue, according to Crain’s Detroit Business.
The three-piece cars are 66 feet long and carry 125 passengers on average. They travel 35 miles per hour and stop for traffic lights along the 3.3-mile-long line. The cars are powered by a 750-volt lithium ion battery, operating 60 percent off-wire, the highest percentage of any streetcar system in the United States, according to a news release. Walk-up fares are estimated at $1.50.