It’s almost done. The final rail was welded on the QLINE at 12:30 pm on Friday, November 11. That completes the installation and connection of the 6.6-mile streetcar route on Woodward Ave.
Woodward will be reopened to traffic just before America’s Thanksgiving Parade.
“Today marks the end of QLINE track construction,” says M-1 RAIL CEO Matt Cullen. “We’re entering a new phase of the project that will see Woodward Ave. reopened to traffic and QLINE cars soon making their first appearance on the track for training and testing.”
The thermite weld was one of more than 1,000 welds done on the project since it began in September 2014. It took 10 people, including four welders and two operators, to accomplish the noteworthy event.
“Our team has worked seven days a week, rain or shine, to keep QLINE construction on schedule,” says Paul Childs, M-1 RAIL chief operating officer. “We’ve installed 34,000 feet of track, nearly 400,000 lbs. of rebar and poured more than 12,000 yards of concrete to date. We want to thank the residents and business owners along the route who have worked with us every step of the way. Construction is close to completion.”
The QLINE expects to receive its third vehicle from Brookville Equipment Corp. in late November. Each streetcar is 66 feet long and will carry about 125 passengers. They will have wi-fi access and vertical bicycle racks as well as an HVAC unit to keep passengers comfortable no matter what Michigan’s unpredictable weather hurls at them. There will be station-level access for pedestrians as well as for those using mobility assistance devices such as wheelchairs. It will travel down Woodward at 35 mph.
Hiring for streetcar operators and maintenance technicians is now underway. The deadline to apply is November 23. For more information, click here.