MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Trolley nights haven’t been the same since the city pulled them off the tracks last summer, and downtown businesses felt it.
A local company changed all that when they announced they were bringing their new “trolley” to help boost business and bring back the feel of a real trolley night.
It looked a lot like the real thing, but Memphis’ newest trolley didn’t run on the tracks.
It was a bus!
But South Main Business owners were thrilled to see it.
Eric Evans said the trollies played into the artsy feel of this corner of downtown.
“Anything we can do to help people experience this part of town and our little niche down here in the south main district is cool,” he said.
Evans owned Seche Designs downtown.
He said trolley nights bring out the locals, and people from other parts of the city who enjoy good times and a trolley ride.
“A chance to get on one of those old trolleys and ride. Rickety going down the track. It’s a cool experience especially for young kids,” Evans explained.
But the family-friendly night took a major hit when the trolleys were ripped from the tracks.
They were unsafe and outdated.
But these green busses were not doing the trick.
When south main association officials saw Tstar Limousine’s new bus driving downtown they saw an opportunity.
“We want this to be a big part of Memphis. This is what we need,”Gabe Barnes with Tstar said.
Barnes said they were happy to offer free rides and remind everyone of the good old days.
In the meantime, the city said any solution would cost millions, but local business owners like David Bunk wanted to see MATA take a page from Tstar’s book and buy a few of these.
They’ve even found a used fleet at a seemingly reasonable price.
“Oh yeah I think they are listening, the question is do they have the money that they need to get this done?”Bunk said.