The Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) in California, US, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the city of Santa Ana, outlining the roles and responsibilities associated with the development, implementation, operations and maintenance of the OC Streetcar project.
The OC streetcar is planned to operate along a route that is just longer than four miles from the Santa Ana train station, through Downtown Santa Ana and the Civic Centre, along the Pacific Electric right of way and connect to a new multimodal transit hub at Harbor Boulevard and Westminster Avenue in Garden Grove.
The project is intended to provide easy connections for people travelling from trains and buses to employment, retail and recreational areas.
Santa Ana mayor and OCTA director Miguel Pulido said: "This agreement is another big step toward the realisation of Orange County’s first modern streetcar.
"The streetcar will improve the way people move through the heart of our county and provide needed transportation alternatives for a modern work environment."
As part of the MoU, OCTA is responsible for the design, construction, operations, maintenance and ownership of the streetcar system once operational.
Securing and administering the project funding will also be done by the OCTA, which will also be responsible for project procurements and right-of-way acquisition activities with the city’s assistance.
Both OCTA and the city of Santa Ana will be responsible for developing and participating in a public outreach programme.
Under the project, a total of seven streetcars are planned to be operated along the route, stopping at 12 stations.
The estimated project cost will be $250m with OCTA pursuing local, state and federal funding.
Design phase of the streetcar project will start later this year with construction planned to be initiated in 2017, while it is expected to be operation in 2019.
The streetcar is expected to carry more than 6,000 riders a day by 2035.