Charlotte, NC — Borrowed Trolley
Rail Transit Online – August 2004
The first week of heritage streetcar operation linking
Charlotte’s Historic South End to Uptown (Center City) attracted 8,354
passengers, with the highest single-day total — 1,535 — recorded on July 3.
Severe crowding on some runs has prompted the Charlotte Area Transit System
to lease a replica open-bench trolley from Gomaco. Car No. 1776 was built
in the mid-1980s, about the time when two similar cars were manufactured for
the line in the Lowell (Massachusetts) National Historic Park. According to
Gomaco Sales Manager John Kallin, No. 1776 briefly operated in Mason City,
Iowa, before returning to the company plant in Ida Grove, Iowa. It has
remained there ever since. Kallin said the 15-bench car has seating for 90
and is powered by a set of Milan trucks with 25 hp motors. The car is
scheduled to be returned to Gomaco after the arrival of the last of three
new replica Birney cars being supplied to Charlotte. The first car is
scheduled for delivery in late August, the second in late September and the
third in late October.
Rapid progress is being made on the three Birney
replicas for the Charlotte Area Transit System. Gomaco photo.