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Here you'll find past and upcoming panels, articles, stories, news, and more.

"In the [Wall Street Journal] interview, Mr. Buttigieg said an infrastructure package could drive job growth, as proponents of road and bridge building usually do. But he also noted a shift occurring at local-government levels, where mayors and county officials have begun to embrace projects to reimagine streetscapes and return some urban and suburban zones to pedestrians and other transportation modes, shifting away from a focus on cars. That has included, he said, some projects to tear down or alter highways built during previous eras of infrastructure investment that are now seen as harmful to their surrounding communities."

Local Updates
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August 8, 2022

The study proposed by the RiverRail Task Force is a long overdue obligation of the South Bend City Government. The City government's favorite planning firm, Torti Gallas, presented a detailed plan to develop the Lincolnway West. Torti Gallas called specifically for a "modern streetcar" route along Lincolnway to attract private investment to generate the jobs, housing, businesses — and tax base — that can transform that deserving community. It's long past time for the City to act. The proposed modern streetcar study is sitting on the Mayor's desk.

Click to view Torti Gallas' detailed plan


June 7, 2021

The RiverRail Task Force appears on Michiana News Channel and describes the major impact that modern streetcar systems have had in other cities and towns all across the country.


May 11, 2021

A local group wants to connect you with amenities in St. Joseph County by streetcar.


October 26, 2021

"Thank you for a very generous meeting and discussion on the next step toward the employment of a modern streetcar as a tool for growth and development of the larger South Bend – Mishawaka - Notre Dame community. The purpose of this memo is to share ideas with you for a clear path for the Modern streetcar as well as to follow up on our requests for your leadership and the City of South Bend’s funding of the Feasibility Study."

Click to read more

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May 25, 2021

A significant investment in transit infrastructure has led to some major development in cities like Portland, Tucson, New Orleans, and Atlanta. One local group believes it could have a similar impact in South Bend and has prepared plans for a Streetcar project that could connect major attractions.


April 2, 2021

The time is ripe for the cities of South Bend and Mishawaka, the University of Notre Dame and St. Joseph County to unite in transforming our area into Indiana’s first transit-oriented community.

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July 28, 2021

River Park enjoys strong neighborhood and business groups that have engaged positively with the The RiverRail Task Force. See the attached video produced by local leaders in the neighborhood.


May 13, 2021

16 News Now tells us why The RiverRail Task Force says an electric streetcar will add much more to this community than just public transportation.

Talking Transit

What are they waiting for?

The RiverRail Task Force is continuing its grassroots campaign in neighborhoods crossed by the proposed modern streetcar study routes. Formal letters of support for the RiverRail Study shared in this article include the Northeast Neighborhood Council Board and River Park Neighborhood Association Board.

Let's face facts:

South Bend and the other communities in “Toll Road Counties” have already seen nearly five billion dollars taken from Toll Road revenues over the past few years to mostly go to other parts of Indiana. Now, as Hoosiers, we want our roads everywhere to be safe and convenient, but how much longer to the people of South Bend and Mishawaka have to see dollars from Washington, DC and our very own Toll Road spread mostly elsewhere in the state, but for a small percentage.

Let’s get in the game for TheRiverRail! Indianapolis is already scoring! 

The clock is ticking on federal funding. We need teamwork across the board, including our public officials, to make the Modern Streetcar project a reality.

Want to help the environment?

Join the "Call to Action" to bring the Modern Streetcar to the South Bend/Mishawaka community.

2020 Demographic Report of Lincolnway West

A Lincoln Way West 2020 Demographic Report by Matthew L. Sisk, Ph.D., is a high-level assessment of some key 2020 Census indicators of racial and housing characteristics of the "LincolnwayWest" Corridor (LWW) of South Bend. Of course, folks who reside in the corridor and those who represent it know better than anyone about its development challenges and wonderful opportunities.

What makes for a more walkable city?

 Good planning and good public transportation that people will find both useful, convenient, safe and comfortable can make all the difference. Please take the time to enjoy this Ted Talk.

"We're an automobile community"

The car may be a necessity, a luxury or a hobby…or in some cases all three. But as part of a typical household income the cost of the car is not a small expense.

The Tale of
Two Streetscapes

The Vitality of Life on the Street = The Vitality of the City

A Little Holiday Story

When I was a member of the Indiana Senate (the seat now held so well by Senator Dave Niezgodski), I had a holiday “ritual” of sorts before every January session, and it involved the late, great Circuit Judge John Montgomery.

The Wayne Street Historic District

The proposed RiverRail will generate connections that will be the lifeblood of our community.

A look at our region's population

Some folks have said to us that “South Bend has lost too much population to support a ‘Modern Streetcar’ system. We just aren’t densely populated enough”

How the RiverRail creates new housing opportunities

One of the greatest opportunities The RiverRail can bring is new housing opportunities for folks of all ages to live in a walkable, “livable” South Bend and Mishawaka.

Streetcar News


INDOT, Purdue to develop wireless electric vehicle charging solution for highway infrastructure

"The Indiana Department of Transportation and Purdue University have announced plans to develop the world’s first contactless wireless-charging concrete pavement highway segment. The project will use innovative magnetizable concrete – developed by German startup Magment GmbH – enabling wireless charging of electric vehicles as they drive."

August 16, 2021

Transit Oriented Development Goal Of Zoning Amendments

A proposal passed by the Indianapolis City-County Council last week amends parts of Indy Rezone, an overhaul of the city’s zoning ordinances. It introduces a new overlay district that applies to IndyGo’s rapid transit lines.

May 20, 2021

It's time to stop thinking about transportation planning as a commodity. Transportation is a public utility just like water

The summit featured short keynotes explaining important basic concepts, and three separate deep dives on promoting more equity in housing and land use, why strong Black and Brown businesses are key to neighborhood vitality, and how to right the wrongs of past damaging transportation decisions and promote restorative justice. 

March 9, 2021

Pete Buttigieg: One month into my Washington job, I see South Bend everywhere

"The importance of transportation was reflected in the priorities of my time in office, from Smart Streets to enhancing rail service to Chicago, from working with Transpo to supporting our airport’s successful pursuit of international status."

March 18, 2021

Buttigieg: Biden Plan Will Usher in a New Transportation Era

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg says an infrastructure plan expected soon from President Joe Biden will offer a “once in a century” opportunity to remake transportation in the United States, with cars and highways no longer king.

December 10, 2020

KC Streetcar Extension: $174MM FFGA

Kansas City (Missouri) Street Car’s $351 million Main Street Extension Project is taking a major step forward.

January 2, 2019

FTA grant for Portland streetcar study

A Federal Transit Administration grant will help a Pacific Northwest city study expansion of its streetcar network.

April 13, 2015

Desert Transit: The Tucson Transit Tale

In the middle of the Sonoran desert, surrounded by five towering mountain ranges and amidst gangly Saguaro cacti lies a little heralded and ongoing transit story. Tucson, Arizona is certainly no transit desert.

September 24, 2021

Indy city leaders are moving to the future… and South Bend isn’t even at the starting line! Tell the Mayor of South Bend to step up to the challenge!

"The transit-oriented development overlay recently approved by the city has the potential to be the most transformative decision for Indy since Unigov. The TOD overlay, which goes into effect at the end of the year, is an amendment to the city’s Consolidated Zoning and Subdivision Ordinance. In this case, TOD is much more than popular urban design lingo. And the benefits the overlay amendment can offer go far beyond specific transit vehicles, lanes or operations."

May 12, 2021

Streetcar Manufacturing Grows in a Small Pennsylvania Town

Cities want modern light rail trains and vintage-style streetcars. Most are built by foreign firms. Few know they also are manufactured by an American company with deep roots in Rust-Belt western Pennsylvania.

April 3, 2021

Task force discusses electric rail line connecting Mishawaka, South Bend, Notre Dame

Members of the task force say this will not only help a lot of people get to where they need to go, but also strengthen the communities around The RiverRail.

March 26, 2021

Tax credits in hand, INHP focuses on affordable single-family homes

The Indianapolis Neighborhood Housing Partnership has become one of the busiest developers of single-family houses in the city, using nearly $15 million in tax credits to build nearly 50 properties in central neighborhoods—with dozens more on the way.

March 15, 2021

Tempe Streetcar Receives First Brookville Liberty® NXT

Brookville Equipment Corp. has delivered the first new Liberty® NXT streetcars to Valley Metro Rail for the Tempe Streetcar system, slated to open later this year.

October 25, 2019

Tucson's streetcar turns 5

Riders and many others in Tucson would like to see the streetcar expand. Farley said the original design included other routes, like up Broadway Boulevard. He wants to continue those plans, including lines to the Tucson mall and airport.

May 9, 2018

Streetcars Play an Expanding Role in Downtown Revivals

New lines have opened, or are in development, in 21 cities across the country.

August 24, 2021

IndyGo gets $81M from feds toward the Purple Line. Here's how it will be spent.

IndyGo received a major funding boost from the federal government to help advance its plans for Indianapolis' next bus rapid transit line.

May 10, 2021

Rebirth of the Streetcar

Two centuries ago, before anyone had the idea of laying rails on the ground so wheels could run swiftly and smoothly over them, nobody could travel faster than they or a horse could walk, or a boat could sail. Then came trains and streetcars, and everybody’s world suddenly seemed smaller. 

March 26, 2021

Why the Modern American Streetcar is the Wheelchair Accessible Transportation We Need

Many historic streetcar, tram and trolley systems have offered limited accessibility, due to their high-floor rolling stock and stations/stops that were produced well over a century before the Americans with Disabilities Act became law. Adapting outdated transportation infrastructure is a time-consuming and costly process, and many cities have still not made their streetcars and subways fully accessible to disabled people.

March 23, 2021

Buttigieg’s Next Job: Selling $3 Trillion Infrastructure Plan to Skeptics

‘When it comes to rail, why should Texas be inferior to China?’ transportation secretary asks amid Republican resistance

March 1, 2021

New push could make San Diego the next stop for streetcar revival

"My reaction to the idea of a streetcar coming back to the Uptown District is one of excitement." said Eddie Reynoso, who heads the Equality Business Alliance.

July 25, 2019

Sun Link streetcar driving development in Tucson

Since its launch in 2014, there has been more than $1 billion of private and public investment along the streetcar route.

November 30, 2016

The Bottom Line on Transit Funding

In particular, investments in public transit in mature communities leads to urban revitalization and redevelopment — as is occurring in Kansas City along the recently-opened Streetcar alignment.

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