DTE Energy Co. is building four new traction power substations to power the M-1 Rail streetcar line along its 3.3 mile stretch on Woodward Avenue in Detroit, as well as lighting, businesses and neighborhoods along the route.
The first substation was built in September and the others will be completed by the end of the year, DTE said. The cost to build all four of the 14-by-45-foot substations will total about $9 million.
Terrance Devoe and Chris Drinkhorn work on finishing up the DTE substation on Woodward Avenue at Bethune Street in Detroit — one of four that will power the M-1 Rail streetcar route and surrounding areas.
The substations will be located along Woodward Avenue at Willis, John R and Amsterdam streets and Bethune Avenue.
The QLine-branded streetcars will be charged when an overhead arm on the car makes contact with an overhead catenary wire powered by the substation.
DTE is working in collaboration with the Michigan Department of Transportation and M-1 Rail.
Robert Richard, vice president of DTE’s Major Enterprise Projects, said the M-1 Rail project also fits into DTE’s multimillion dollar improvement of Detroit’s infrastructure, which includes the expanding businesses, retail and housing and hotel developments along Woodward Avenue.
“I am thrilled to celebrate the QLine as a model for what can happen when private industry and government agencies collaborate,” MDOT Director Kirk T. Steudle said in a news release.
Other substations outside the M-1 Rail route that are either being built or renovated will help boost the city’s overall power grid and help power places like the new Little Caesars Arena and other downtown and Midtown areas.