Thursday, October 8, 2015

Check out this map of Detroit's electric rail system in 1915

Posted By on Thu, Oct 8, 2015 at 3:12 PM



In 2015, we're all very excited about our 3.3-mile streetcar line, since electric rail is largely regarded as one of the biggest boosts you can give to urban development these days. Crews have been hard at work for almost two years now. They now say they'll be ready for passengers in 2017. 



But did you know that, in 1915, the Detroit United Railways operated one of the largest regional electric rail systems in the world right here? It had more than 800 miles of track, more than 200 of them in the city limits of Detroit, where one fare would get you across town, and 600 miles in the high-speed interurban lines.The enterprise was valued at almost $50 million. In today's money, that's more than $1.1 billion.

Of course, after dismantling all our electric track more than 50 years ago, we have to build it all up again. And judging by the fact that it's taken M-1 rail about one year to build each mile of track, we'll be all caught up with 100 years ago by ... 2855.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at letters@metrotimes.com.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Detroit Metro Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Metro Times Press Club for as little as $5 a month.

Read the Digital Print Issue

November 24, 2021

View more issues

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In Detroit

© 2021 Detroit Metro Times - Contact Us

Website powered by Foundation