CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Charlotte City Council approved a $50 million contract Tuesday night to plan the Silver Line light rail.
The proposed route would connect Matthews to Belmont with stops in uptown Charlotte and at the Charlotte Douglas International Airport
It will take at least five years to plan.
An official cost for the project will not be available until 65 percent of the project is designed.
Council members delayed the vote a couple weeks ago to see what would happen with the quarter cent sales tax increase.
Because that failed, city leaders need to decide if they will front the money for the study. They will also be tasked with finding state and federal funding to cover the construction costs if the plan moves forward.
The city may also pursue another tax referendum, specifically for the light rail. Other options include property tax increases and public private partnerships.
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