Delmar Loop Trolley

All the ways we move people and things: trains, planes, automobiles, biking, walking, etc.
First unread post1611 posts
There is movement...

https://fox2now.com/2018/11/07/loop-tro ... ification/

"An FTA spokesperson tells us the certification process is 'close to complete.'"

"University City Mayor Terry Crow says a ribbon cutting is set for Thursday of next week."

So, that's November 15, 2018 for the ribbon cutting.

Found this factoid on twitter:

https://twitter.com/KirkwoodRichpd7/sta ... 1240385536

"For those who wants to know what the color blue also stands for is the color Bi-State had when it took over from St. Louis Public Service in 1963. Red and Creme was the St. Louis Public Service Company paint scheme."

Neat!
^Looking good! Way past time for this thing to get going.
Lets go back to the original pitch for this trolley
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=taJ4MFCxiuo&t=2m25s
...except the ribbon cutting is completely unrelated to the start of service, which is still anybody's guess. Shouldn't a ribbon cutting be, like, when it opens for service?
^^Brought to us by Professor Blueberry Hill. All right. I confess. That's funny. A man who knows nothing about trolleys sells one to a town with the unexpected result that, after lots and lots of bumps in the road and nearly being bankrupted and almost losing all his friends . . .

. . . It works. And everyone loves it. Yes. I think I can live with that. (Assuming it comes out that way, anyway. I supremely hope so.)
It looks like the ribbon cutting signifies the start of actual service after all:

https://www.stltoday.com/news/local/met ... op-story-2
Tow tucks, I see tow trucks in your future Delmar loop area.
The Loop Trolley wins the race between it and STL-CHI 110 mph Amtrak service!
Loop Trolley strikes pick-up truck during test run
https://fox2now.com/2018/11/13/loop-tro ... ce=twitter
^ For f***'s sake, this is the entire story:

ST. LOUIS, Mo. – Days before its grand opening to the public, a Loop Trolley car struck a pick-up truck during a test run, Fox 2 News has learned.

The incident happened in front of The Pageant concert hall in the Delmar Loop.

No injuries were reported.
Just stop. This reporting on every f***ing time the Trolley kills a bug is as pathetic as the Trolley fiasco itself.
I refuse to watch TV news, but I can just picture the reporter's deeply serious expression as they deliver this shocking and disturbing news.
^Skipping television news is always a good plan.
This is going to continue to happen for the first several months and it will likely be reported on pretty extensively.

I wouldn't worry too much about it, there are always going to be growing pains with something like this. It would take only a minute or two to provide links to the news articles about all the cars that were clipped by the KC Streetcar in it's first few months. Eventually the driving public will figure it out and these types of stories will die off much like they did over here after awhile.

At one point some dumb kid from the suburbs (Johnson County, of course) blew through a red light while he was on his phone and t boned a streetcar, causing major damage. Plenty of other JOCO folks parked over the white line and caused problems too. One time after a heavy rain the tracks filled with debris and derailed a car. These all got significant attention and then everything worked itself out after a few months. I suspect the same thing will happen in St. Louis.

What I don't expect, is for this one to be anywhere near as successful as KC's.
The Mayor wrote:
Wed Nov 14, 2018 12:32 pm

What I don't expect, is for this one to be anywhere near as successful as KC's.
Have to agree, but also two very different systems for two very different reason in defense of the Loop Trolley. I really, truly believe the Loop Trolley will do better if Forest Park Forever could fund an extension to the Zoo entrance/across I64 to the old FP Hospital site. In addition, charging fare seems counterproductive if its about building up/expanding the tourist, development footprint in the area.

I also believe St. Louis city should be pursuing a modern low floor street car line like KC did for one of its north - south corridors outside of N-S Light rail, whether it be Euclid Ave, Grand Ave, Jefferson Ave/NGS and or maybe a downtown/broadway
dredger wrote:
Wed Nov 14, 2018 3:28 pm
The Mayor wrote:
Wed Nov 14, 2018 12:32 pm

What I don't expect, is for this one to be anywhere near as successful as KC's.
Have to agree, but also two very different systems for two very different reason in defense of the Loop Trolley. I really, truly believe the Loop Trolley will do better if Forest Park Forever could fund an extension to the Zoo entrance/across I64 to the old FP Hospital site. In addition, charging fare seems counterproductive if its about building up/expanding the tourist, development footprint in the area.

I also believe St. Louis city should be pursuing a modern low floor street car line like KC did for one of its north - south corridors outside of N-S Light rail, whether it be Euclid Ave, Grand Ave, Jefferson Ave/NGS and or maybe a downtown/broadway
I'd think Kingshighway the most logical for connection to MetroLink at CWE.
The best comp is probably some blend of the Little Rock Streetcar and Kenosha Streetcar, which are both short heritage streetcar lines running through moderately dense areas.

Hopefully it's a success like KC's streetcar and not a flop like Cincy's streetcar, but in neither case are they appropriate comps.
dredger wrote: I really, truly believe the Loop Trolley will do better if Forest Park Forever could fund an extension to the Zoo entrance/across I64 to the old FP Hospital site. In addition, charging fare seems counterproductive if its about building up/expanding the tourist, development footprint in the area.
Would love to see an extension into Forest Park - perhaps to the corner of Government & Fine Arts Drives to serve both the Zoo and Art Museum (about a .9 mile extension). But I certainly hope Forest Park Forever never goes into the trolley business. They have a big enough mandate/undertaking as it is.

As for charging a fare, I don't see it being counterproductive to tourism or development. It seems perfectly reasonable to pay for either entertainment or transit (depending on how you're using it). There are an impressive number of free attractions in St. Louis. The Loop Trolley doesn't have to be one of them.
What I don't expect, is for this one to be anywhere near as successful as KC's.
The *real* reason KC's 2 mile street car is as "successful" as it is - FREE. (because it really is slow and doesn't quite go anywhere).

If KC ever stops the free ride - and charges 2.00 for it - it won't be as "successful" - ridership will be more on par to most small starter trolley systems in the USA. Many of which don't do that great.
You can't make this stuff up! A car wreck/road rage shooting blocks Trolley.

StlToday - Loop Trolley's first day: A 'bureaucratic snafu' kept it from running full route. Then, crime scene tape.

https://www.stltoday.com/news/local/met ... bef0a.html
Yep. Sounds about right, I'm afraid.

The day quickly went from this:

Image

to this:


Image
Image
matguy70 wrote:
Wed Nov 14, 2018 9:54 pm
What I don't expect, is for this one to be anywhere near as successful as KC's.
One of the reasons contributing to the success of KC's street car is that it is free to ride. Another contributing factor could be the 95% on-time performance that I've read about. It seems to be wildly popular, exceeding 5 million rides this September after less than 2 and a half years of operation. I've never ridden it but it must go to where the people want to go within the downtown area, connecting many relatively densely populated areas and attractions: River Market / City Market, CBD, public library central branch, P+L District, Crossroads, Union Station / Liberty Memorial and Nat'l WWI museum / Crown Center.

I hope our trolley can learn from KC and emulate the same kind of success.
Wow, matguy70. That is uncharacteristically nice of you to say about something related to KC. Did you visit recently? Their niceness must have rubbed off on you, haha. Btw, streetcar is one word.
^ I live in KC and while I wouldn't say it doesn't go anywhere, it is only 2 miles long. I also think if KC decided to institute a fare you'd see a chunk of ridership fall off, but as far as I know there are no plans for that. Having said all that it has been a smashing success. Fingers crossed for the Plaza extension.

I don't suspect that the Delmar Loop streetcar will be as heavily used as the one over here in KC. Like others have mentioned they are both pretty different types of systems, but most importantly because this part of St. Louis is already very well served by a real light rail system. Two subway stations just to the south on the Blue Line and the Delmar stop on the Red Line. The Loop Trolley is for tourists and bar hoppers, not transit users.

Now, to get back on subject. Anyone know how long this kerfuffle with U City is going to keep the line from crossing the city/county line?
The Mayor wrote:
Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:22 pm

Now, to get back on subject. Anyone know how long this kerfuffle with U City is going to keep the line from crossing the city/county line?
So anyone think this is some of U City powers to be attempt to kill the trolley? Make sure it runs on shortened route over winter months and then claim it is a failure to the world because it can't generate ridership.

I wonder if city should double down, add tracks down Delmar East & then south into CWE/Cortex and buy some modern low floor streetcars. In addition, see if Forest Park Forever will fund a park extension to the zoo. Run weekday/weekend modern street cars between FP metrolink station into CWE/Cortex job center and run loop vintage trolleys from Delmar metrolink station to the Zoo and back on weekends.

Might not be the best location/first choice to incorporate a new streetcar line into the city but you got the start of such infrastructure , development happening along Delmar corridor, room for a lot more with addition of fixed transit system and you have growing job center in CWE/Cortex to build ridership upon. Future phase could include extension further south into FPSE/Grove/south city. So 2 - 2 1/2 build out with a future extension of a mile or two.

Don't know enough about the mechanics but assume the loop trolley raised platform will conflict on the short section into Forest Park. But assuming that the existing tracks are able to support bigger vehicle of modern low floor set & wire/voltage could be tweaked if you were to incorporate an existing system such as KC streetcar. You could even leverage KC expansion and add on a car set or two on next purchase to get a better pricing for both cities.
^I don't think so. I think UCity actually has valid points here and the Trolley Co just didn't hold up their end of the agreements. It's not as if UCity is springing some insane, plan altering, last second red tape to derail the entire project. They found one pole that needs more barrier protection (which I find completely valid... especially since people don't exactly drive carefully or are paying attention to the trolley or its infrastructure) and they want to see the emergency / make things right fund funded as was originally expected years ago.

The Trolley could have been a great addition to the Loop, but day after day of these hold ups and issues just makes me feel like it's a toy that wont last. All of these issues could have been avoided had things just been done right from the get go.
chaifetz10 wrote:
Tue Nov 20, 2018 9:08 am
^I don't think so. I think UCity actually has valid points here and the Trolley Co just didn't hold up their end of the agreements. It's not as if UCity is springing some insane, plan altering, last second red tape to derail the entire project. They found one pole that needs more barrier protection (which I find completely valid... especially since people don't exactly drive carefully or are paying attention to the trolley or its infrastructure) and they want to see the emergency / make things right fund funded as was originally expected years ago.

The Trolley could have been a great addition to the Loop, but day after day of these hold ups and issues just makes me feel like it's a toy that wont last. All of these issues could have been avoided had things just been done right from the get go.
I think chaifetz10 pretty much nails it here. From what I've read in the paper University City made repeated attempts to inform the Loop Trolley Company with these issues and they were basically ignored. While I will always think this little trolley is redundant and was probably a waste of scarce transit resources, provided it's managed well it could be a fun, and successful, little attraction. If anything is going to kill it, it'll be mismanagement by the Loop Trolley Co. I'm still not ready to throw the towel in, they'll get these U City requirements taken care of. But thus far, it just looks bad and disorganized.
And to add on to your point, this mismanagement and disorganization should not be rewarded with ideas to expand it. If the Trolley can't respond to just two valid issues from UCity, how/why could we ever expect it to expand in the city?

Honestly, the best thing (in my opinion) would be for the Trolley management company to dissolve and for this to be managed by the city or Bi-State in some capacity. It needs to integrate with existing transit if it's ever going to expand past its current route.