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Reply #130: Detroit destroyed public transport [View All]

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Gaedel Donating Member (802 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-10 05:15 AM
Response to Reply #104
130. Detroit destroyed public transport
Southeastern Michigan once had one of the most comprehensive networks of streetcars and interurban railways in the nation. A succession of Detroit mayors beginning with Hazen Pingree and going through James Couzens (aided and abetted by the Detroit newspapers) continuously campaigned against the transit companies (first horse cars, then electric streetcars). Finally, Couzens refused to renew the expiring charters for the use of Detroit streets and Detroit United Railways was forced to sell the city streetcar lines to a government entity, Detroit Street Railways, for about a third of their value. DSR quickly raised fares something that Couzens had not allowed the DUR to do. The DUR interurban trains were to be allowed to use the streetcar tracks to get their suburban trains into town. DSR raised the fees on that so that the suburban lines became too unprofitable to use the tracks. DUR attempted to establish stations at the city limits where the suburban passengers could transfer to buses to continue downtown, but the inconvenience further reduced ridership. By 1932, most of the lines outside the city limits had been abandoned.
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