“Why would RTD reduce service to one of the boom areas of Denver? There are apartments, condos and new homes being built throughout Five Points, Curtis Park and RiNo; this is an area that by the city’s own estimates (not to mention design) will be far more populous in only a few years. That means a lot for the city’s infrastructure, including that mass-transit options for the area will only become more important, not less.
But starting this January, RTD marooned the single-track line up Welton, turning it into a simple spur back and forth from 16th Street, just one of many new service reductions that has significantly increased the commute time for anyone taking light rail to anywhere but downtown. For a city that needs more light-rail options, reducing service like this is a bewildering move. “Shortsighted” is putting it kindly.
What RTD also may have missed in all this was the way this presents a serious image problem for the department. Five Points is a part of Denver that already feels insulted by the gentrification happening all around it. The shadow of redlining still looms large in the memories of the longtime residents in this historically African-American neighborhood, and reductions in service like this one invoke those uninvited ghosts all over again.
At the very least, if RTD was going to reduce service to the area of Denver once called the Harlem of the West, maybe it would have been smarter to start it on any other day of the year than the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.”
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Bohlen, Teague. Westword 22 January 2018.