BQX Streetcar Will Be Paid For With Fares And Property Taxes, And Include Two New Bridges
The Mayor’s proposed Brooklyn-Queens Connector, or BQX, streetcar line would also add two new bridges across the Gowanus Canal and Newtown Creek, city officials said on Friday.
The bridges would include pedestrian walkways and bike lanes, and city officials say their cost has already been factored into the project’s $2.5B price tag.
The BQX will run from Sunset Park to Astoria and could seriously benefit several mega-projects currently underway along the waterfront when it's projected to come online in 2024, reports NY Yimby.
Deputy Mayor Alicia Glen says the project will largely pay for itself through increasing property value—and by extension property taxes—and fares. She calculates the lots along the BQX’s route would see a 3% to 4% increase in property values.
City officials also say they expect to spend roughly $30M per year operating the BQX, $20M of which will be covered by fares and $10M from the projected rise in property tax revenues.
The city plans to create a nonprofit that can issue tax exempt bonds to finance the project, and pay back the principal within 35 or 40 years.
City officials are still trying to work out whether Metrocard holders would get free access to the streetcar, or have to pay a separate fee. [NYY]