A Trolley In Tallahassee?

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By: Matt Galka
June 25, 2013

Tallahassee, FL - Tallahassee wants to take folks back to the old times... A trolley system has been submitted in the first proposed budget. City officials say a trolley system would be a slam dunk, but Star Metro isn't exactly breaking the bank. Still, the city hopes the plan could get people "all aboard".

You don't have to be a lifer in Tallahassee to understand that downtown has a lot of traffic: both vehicle and foot. A proposed trolley route wants to capitalize on the folks that frequent the area.

Scott Maddox, Tallahassee City Commissioner: "We have some great places in Tallahassee that we've been able to get some economic development in, we just need to connect them now."

Enter a proposed free trolley system that the city has seen before.

The proposed route would loop from Gaines Street, through Downtown, up to the Midtown area. But Star Metro, the entity that would run it, already faces a deficit, so is now the time to invest?

Scott Maddox, Tallahassee City Commissioner: "We're getting six trolleys out of south Florida for free that we're getting at surplus from the city of West Palm Beach. It'll be economical, and it will help our business community."

By hitting hotspots along the route, there's hope for an economic, and ridership boost.

Tallahassee resident John Jackson: "I'm actually from New Orleans, and in New Orleans we have a trolley. It's affordable, it's convenient, and it's something that, when you come to New Orleans, you take it to see the city, I feel like it'd bring a lot to this area."

Tallahassee resident, Erika Stone: "We love trolleys, whenever we go somewhere that has one, it's a fun ride, it's a fun way to see the sights."

Star Metro is projected to finish the 2013 fiscal year 1 million dollars in the red. Commissioner Maddox says this trolley plan has been budgeted for in 2014, but the budget could change dramatically between now and when it is due in the Fall.

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