People in Downtown and Over-the-Rhine will begin seeing a lot more of the streetcar.
City spokesman Rocky Merz said it is the burn-in phase of the project. Each of Cincinnati's five streetcar vehicles will have to log 500 kilometers on the tracks before they can be certified for service. Streetcar employee and driver training will occur after the burn-in period.
Merz reminds drivers not to park on the streetcar tracks, and to make sure you are parked completely within the white lines along the streetcar route. That includes your vehicle's side mirrors.
“This is first and foremost about safety," Merz said in a written statement. "We do not want to see anyone ticketed or towed, however, parking on or near the tracks is illegal and unsafe. We recognize this new transportation infrastructure is something everyone needs to get used to. We want people to understand the importance of not parking on, or near, the tracks.”
Beginning April 22, the city will begin ticketing, and in some cases towing, vehicles that are blocking the tracks. The fine for parking on the tracks, or outside the white lines surrounding the tracks, is $50. The city has been giving warnings to drivers for the last several months.
Drivers in violation of existing parking laws such as double parking, parking in a no parking zone or parking in a truck unloading zone will continue to receive tickets or be towed.
Streetcar passenger service is still scheduled to begin in September.