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Madison’s high-speed rail station could ramp up development

By Joe Yovino

Last week’s announcement of a Madison station on the high-speed rail route brought out supporters and detractors on both sides of the rail.

This week, Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz announced he wants to build on the downtown high-speed rail station by adding a public market, a parking garage and more planning for the area southeast of Capitol Square in a $238 million capital budget for 2011.

Cieslewicz, in the city’s budget, has earmarked $36.4 million for development around the station at the State of Wisconsin Administration Building, 101 E. Wilson St. Besides the $11.5 million to $12.5 million for the new station, he wants to spend $10.7 million over four years — half of it to be raised privately — on a public market, with construction beginning in 2014.

Ridership, WisDOT estimates, on the Chicago-Milwaukee-Madison rail line is projected to reach 1.17 million in 2013.

Apparently none of those riders are expected to go to the Central Library or the Edgewater Hotel, as those two issues that have dominated Madison’s political landscape over the past year are missing from any mention in the budget.

Joe Yovino is the Web editor at The Daily Reporter. He realizes the Edgewater is a bit of a walk from the proposed Madison station, but he really wants to see it redeveloped.

One comment

  1. It’s called transit-oriented development (TOD). In the Twin Cities, the Metropolitan Council just announced that a wealth of other development is expected along light rail corridors there, including another 9,000 housing units near Hiawatha Avenue train stations and 11,500 units built or in construction along the Central Corridor with another 7,850 proposed. People like to live near rail service.

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