Financing for the Brooklyn-Queens Connector (BQX) continues to be the unresolved issue for this project. Supporters originally claimed it could be built for $1.7 billion, but Mayor Bill de Blasio said $2.5 billion.
Imagine how many more billions it might cost when completed?
Claims that construction would start in 2019 and service begin by 2024 are wishful thinking. The completion date could be several more years.
There are many narrow streets along the proposed corridor that will have to compete with vehicles, bicycles and pedestrians. No neighborhoods have come forward to accept the two multi-acre operations, maintenance and storage facilities necessary to accommodate 52 or more street cars.
The mayor promised riders would pay the same $2.75 fare as those using the subway and bus, including free transfers. But he fails to identify how the city will provide the MTA with operating subsidies to cover the cost of lost revenues.
The journey for a project of this scope can easily take 10-20 years before becoming a reality.
Given the uncertainties of project financing and growing costs for utility, sewer lines and water main relocation, a new limited stop bus route along this corridor would make more sense.