To complement Orange County’s Metrolink service, passengers need a way to get to their final destination after getting off a train. Through Transit Extensions to Metrolink, a Measure M program intended to broaden the reach of Orange County’s backbone rail system to key employment, population, and activity centers, the cities of Santa Ana and Garden Grove developed a fixed guideway project that would address this need.
After evaluating many alternatives and extensive outreach, a streetcar was chosen as the preferred alternative. Expected to begin operations in 2020, the OC Streetcar will link the bustling Santa Ana Regional Transportation Center (SARTC), which provides regional rail, OCTA bus, and intercity and international bus services, to a new multimodal hub at Harbor Boulevard/Westminster Avenue in Garden Grove. Along the way, OC Streetcar will connect directly with 18 OCTA bus routes. OC Streetcar will serve the historic downtown Santa Ana and Civic Center which includes government offices, federal, state and local courthouses, unique restaurants and shops, an artists’ village, several colleges and a variety of community enrichment organizations.
OC Streetcar will increase transportation options and provide greater access along its 4.15-mile route (in each direction) along Santa Ana Boulevard, 4th Street, and the Pacific Electric right-of-way to Harbor Boulevard in Garden Grove.
The Future’s on Track! – Recent and Featured MilestonesMarch 10, 2015: With the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) issuance of a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI), the OC Streetcar is now environmentally cleared and ready to advance for additional design and engineering.May 5, 2015: OCTA receives approval to enter Federal New Starts Program.
February 9, 2016: OC Streetcar got a major boost when President Barack Obama included $125 million for the OC Streetcar in his budget for next fiscal year, signaling federal endorsement for the much-anticipated project.
Project Development 2015 – 2016
The project development phase includes the development, public circulation and approval of all environmental documents, the adoption of the preferred route by the cities, and the beginning of project design.
Design and Engineering 2016 – 2017
In the design and engineering phase, all the details of how the streetcar will be constructed and operated will be developed.
Construction 2018 – 2020
In the construction phase, tracks will be laid and the streetcar will become a reality.
Testing; Begin Operations 2020
Since safety is a top priority, the streetcar system will be thoroughly tested before it is ready for public use.
The preliminary cost estimate for the OC Streetcar is $298 million (year of expenditure). Funding sources identified for this project, including capital and operations and maintenance, include Measure M as well as Federal Transit Administration New Starts, , Federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement, and State Cap-and-Trade.
By offering a connection between the SARTC Metrolink Station and 18 OCTA bus routes, the OC Streetcar will eliminate transit gaps, allowing seamless, convenient travel to employment centers as well as local restaurants and shopping.
Local Santa Ana and Garden Grove residents will soon be able to leave their cars home and hop aboard the convenient OC Streetcar to connect with Metrolink, OCTA bus services, and intercity and regional bus services at SARTC, as well as local government offices, federal, state and local courthouses, unique restaurants and shops, an artists’ village, several colleges, and a variety of community enrichment organizations.
In many cities, streetcars have generated substantial business development, boosted interest and sales, and created temporary and permanent jobs, and it is expected that the OC Streetcar will bring the same kind of positive change to the Santa Ana business district. During construction, all businesses will remain open. OCTA will reach out to community stakeholders for input throughout the process, while maintaining safety and access as a high priority.
As part of the Measure M2 Project S – Transit Extensions to Metrolink, the OC Streetcar Project will make it possible for the increasing numbers of Metrolink travelers to rely on public transportation for their entire journey throughout Orange County and beyond. This vital link in Orange County’s extensive transportation network is an integral part of the region’s mobility future.
In 2014, Tucson's Sun Link Streetcar began operating between the region’s two largest activity centers (downtown and the University of Arizona), to commercial districts and a redevelopment area. Part of a regional transportation plan, Sun Link has created 500 construction jobs, attracted 1500+ new housing units, 50+ route-adjacent restaurants, bars, and cafes, $63 million+ in streetcar federal funds, and $800 million in private-sector funds.
In 2016, for the first time in more than half a century, a street car will roll down the streets of Kansas City, MO. The 2-mile KC Downtown Streetcar route will run along Main Street and connect the River Market to Crown Center and Union Station, creating hundreds of jobs and spurring economic development. About 2,700 people are expected to ride the streetcar each day.
The Sugar House Streetcar took its first run in 2013 and connects local light rail with the Sugar House Business District. The streetcar has accelerated or is partially responsible for the creation of 1,000+ residential units and nearly 2 million square feet of redevelopment on seven sites. South Salt Lake City anticipates extensive development along the streetcar line.
Stay tuned and check back soon for upcoming events!
Santa Ana Regional Transit Center (SARTC)
Saturday, November 29 from 3:30-6:30 PM
1000 E. Santa Ana Blvd.
Santa Ana, CA 92701
Wednesday November 16
625 French Street
Santa Ana, CA 92701Event Postcard
City of Santa Ana Downtown Celebration
Thursday October 20
The Frida Cinema
305 E. 4th Street
Santa Ana, CA 92701
Saturday, August 13 from 10:00 – 11:30 A.M.
625 French Street
Santa Ana, CA 92701Event Postcard
Downtown Santa Ana 5k Run & Ciclovia
Saturday, August 20 from 8:00am – 2:00pm
Downtown Santa Ana
Main and Fourth Street
As part of Measure
M, all 34 cities in Orange County were given the opportunity to develop transit
extensions to the Metrolink corridor. The cities of Santa Ana and Garden Grove
competed for and were awarded funds, through Measure M - Transit Extensions to
Metrolink, for further development of a fixed guideway project that would
broaden the reach of Metrolink to key destinations within their communities.
The route was chosen by the Cities of Santa
Ana and Garden Grove as a result of a detailed alternatives analysis (AA) study
that evaluated multiple routes and technologies. The locally preferred
alternative (LPA), Streetcar Alternative 1, was selected by the Santa Ana City
Council on August 5, 2014 and adopted on January 20, 2015. The City of Garden Grove
also adopted a resolution approving the LPA on February 10, 2015.
City of Santa Ana
City of Garden Grove
Federal Transit Administation
91 Express Lanes
OCTA Administrative Office
550 S. Main StreetOrange, CA 92868