MARTA won’t be the operator of the soon-to-be-completed Atlanta Streetcar, according to a top official in Mayor Kasim Reed’s administration. “It’s been
This is big news. With MARTA no longer operating the Atlanta Streetcar (still under construction), a private contractor will be chosen. Atlanta’s history with private contractors is iffy at best — ParkAtlanta being an unpopular example.
The major question left unanswered at this point: will transfers to and from MARTA still happen? Will the Breeze Card system of MARTA still be used for the streetcar? If the answer to either of those is “no” then I sense big trouble for the Atlanta Streetcar’s ability to gain regular riders, A lack of integration with MARTA’s fare system would hurt the convenience level (and price point) significantly.
EDITED: two commenters have helped ease my fears and I think it’s likely that MARTA and the streetcar will continue to partner so that the Breeze Card system is used for streetcar fares. But I’d still like to see some official statement saying it’s so in the wake of this news.