Greensboro’s free trolley service is revving up. Starting this July, residents will be able to ride the city’s new rubber-tire trolleys every day of the week starting in the morning to as late as midnight. Trolleys will arrive every 5-7 minutes, free to the public.
The trolley route will run along parts of Elm Street and make stops in places like the South Elm Street/Union Square area, the Tanger Center, Center City Park and the LoFi Park area, including several major downtown employers. The route will also connect riders to several existing Greensboro Transit Agency routes.
The project has been funded in part by participatory budgeting, a process where members of the community vote on how a portion of the city’s budget will be spent. It received the highest number of votes during the city’s participatory budgeting process in 2019, garnering $90,000 in funding, $18,000 from each of the five districts. It was also designated to receive $1 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds following a city council decision in January.
The city will refurbish four dedicated diesel-powered buses so they look like old trolleys. Instead of getting rid of some retired buses that would’ve been sold off, these buses will be retrofitted with new engines and serve a fun, new purpose.
The interior of the trolleys will feature decorative transit maps with routes from the early 1900s, when rail-bound and trackless trolleys alike traversed the city’s streets. The trolley service will include internal audio announcements that will share historical information with riders and help them find their way around, and will also emit nostalgic trolley-bell sounds to announce their arrival.GTA has invited the public to suggest names for the trolley service. Submissions can be made here or through GTA’s Twitter/Facebook (@gtaheat) or Instagram (@gtaheatbus) pages before May 8.
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[…] 2019, a free trolley service project garnered $90,000 in funding — $18,000 from each of the five districts — during the city’s […]