Fort Lauderdale drops support for Wave streetcar project

Fate of controversial train route is unclear after vote

Courtesy of Wave Streetcar

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The Fort Lauderdale City Commission voted Tuesday night to end its support for the Wave streetcar project.

Opponents have called the project, which has been slated for more than a decade, outdated and a "train to nowhere." At meeting in February, many people told commissioners that the city should be investing in its beleaguered sewer system rather than spending millions on the Wave.

Supporters have said the streetcar will benefit downtown professionals, making Fort Lauderdale a more walkable city.

It's unclear how the city's vote will affect the project. Chaz Adams, public affairs manager for Fort Lauderdale, said the fate of the Wave may rest with the Florida Department of Transportation, which is in charge of the project. 

The Wave would operate above ground and operate a 2.8-mile route within downtown Fort Lauderdale. It would link to other transit lines such as bus routes and the Brightline rail service. 

The project was budgeted to cost $195.3 million, but other estimates put the price at $270 million. The federal government has already committed nearly $90 million to the project.