The new QLine hosted a donor preview today at the Penske Technical Center ahead of its May 12 grand opening. Construction for the $142 million project began in July of 2014 and was completed in late 2016.
“QLINE’s grand opening will be a historic day in Detroit,” said Matt Cullen, CEO of M-1 Rail, the organization that runs the rail system. “We’re bringing rail transit back to the heart of the city and connecting the Woodward Corridor in a way that’s already begun to transform the entire district.”
The QLine, a 3.3 mile circular rail along Woodward Avenue, will provide streetcar service along 12 stops, each approximately a quarter of a mile apart. There are a total of 23 stations that will operate between West Grand Boulevard and Congress. Each streetcar will accommodate up to 125 riders with seating for 34 and is expected to service up to 8,000 riders each day. One completed route takes approximately 23 minutes and the streetcar will reach speeds up to 35 mph.
Although the route may be short, the QLine connects the North End, New Center, Midtown and downtown at a time where development and revitalization in these communities is high.
“The QLINE will activate the sidewalks throughout the community, encouraging residents and visitors to experience all the neighborhood has to offer, from our cultural institutions, restaurants and small businesses, to Detroit’s entertainment district. The streetcar will create connectivity and serve all who live, work and play in Detroit,” said Sommer Woods, vice president of external affairs for the M-1 Rail.
QLine officials said the streetcar, “will ignite over $3 billion in economic development over 10 years, including 10,000 new housing units over 5 million square feet of new commercial space within a 10-year period.”
While the QLine is still in the testing phase in preparation for the May 12 grand opening, Paul Childs M-1 Rail Chief Operating Officer said he is confident that the organization has built a reliable system that riders will safely enjoy.
“Testing and training continues to go well and we’re excited for people to experience their first ride on the streetcar. Our team has done a great job building a system that will be safe, reliable and deliver a best-in-class transit experience.”
Service for the QLine runs Monday through Thursday from 6 am to 11 pm, Friday 6 am to midnight, Saturday 8 am to midnight and Sunday 8 am to 8 pm. The cost to ride the QLline is $1.50, but discounts are available for students and seniors.