SAN ANTONIO -- A report released Wednesday blasts a planned VIA streetcar system as a waste of taxpayer dollars. Randal O'Toole, who wrote the report for the Cato Institute, said the system would not bring the economic development city and county leaders were touting.
"Streetcars are very expensive. They're expensive to build, they're expensive to operate and expensive to maintain," said O'Toole.
He went on to say that the cars only moved eight miles per hour and were not as efficient as a bus system.
However, VIA and county leaders blasted the report with Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff saying it was full of "disinformation."
"Once you get up and running, the cost per passenger that boards it and gets off is a lot less than trying to run a bus," Wolff said.
The report was released hours before a public meeting Wednesday night at Sunset Station. VIA representatives presented the plan as a way to bring businesses and people downtown, where the streetcar is currently planned to run. People at the meeting were not given time to make a public comment, but were able to ask questions and place dots on a map where they'd like to see stops.
Construction could begin in 2015 with completion scheduled in 2017.