Five Saint Paul Problems that Streetcars Might Solve

[…] streetcar plan came out a few weeks ago. The city is holding open houses on the streetcar proposal beginning this week. (Yesterday!) You can read all about streetcars here on the site…
Saint Paul has a strong tradition of being skeptical about trends, and the streetcar plan is no exception. For example, an East Side […]

Examples of Modern Streetcars

When is a Modern Streetcar not a Modern Streetcar?

[…] of a handout. On the front page there are five examples of Modern Streetcar to show some of the characteristics of Modern Streetcar. None of the five streetcars would meet the requirements of the LPA, because they could not work on the east and west ends of the route where the streetcar must accommodate […]

The Magic of Streetcars, The Logic of Buses

The City of Minneapolis is promoting Streetcars in a number of corridors, including one in North along Broadway to compensate for the rerouting of Bottineau LRT to avoid North. Promoters of Minneapolis Streetcars, including Mayor R.T. Rybak, are engaged in magical thinking in their assertion that streetcars will have transformative effects.
Famously, Minneapolis and St. […]

Six Less Obvious Benefits to Streetcars

[…] together when you need to, for events or along dense corridors. Toronto has new streetcars with 85 seats, and open floorplan streetcars can expand that even farther.
Electricity – Streetcars run on electricity. In a world of volatile energy prices, I can only imagine that transitioning to electricity as a fuel source will give transit agencies […]

Bring Back Streetcar Living

[…] stick around and so that people have an interest in adding more. We can even add more grocery stores! More neighbors help.
Buses often run more or less where the streetcars did (even expanding coverage in some areas), but even if buses are equivalent (I’m not sure), our zoning doesn’t allow the old pattern of growth. Instead […]

Evolution of the Twin City Rapid Transit Streetcar System (1880-1954)

Based on the data used in
Xie, Feng and David Levinson (2010) How Streetcars Shaped Suburbanization: A Granger-Casality Analysis of Land Use and Transit in The Twin Cities.Journal of Economic Geography 10(3), pp. 453-470

This article presents a Granger causality analysis of the coupled development of population and streetcars in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St Paul […]

Virtual 1950s Streetcar to Richfield at Thursday’s Happy Hour

h/t to Avidor for the illustration. We’re having another Virtual Happy Hour this Thursday. Plus, we’re going to kick off a new presentation feature, where folks stop in and present info about a topic they like. First up, streetcar history expert Aaron Issacs is going to share a video of a 1950s streetcar trip […]


The Riverview Modern Streetcar Is Still Not Good Transit

[…] free, and when fares have been implemented, the results for ridership have been catastrophic. To a large number of users, the quality of service provided by these streetcars is not worth paying for. In proposing a streetcar service with over six and a half miles of new track, St. Paul would dramatically upscale a […]

Picking a Streetcar Fight with the Met Council is the Right Move for Minneapolis

You might have missed it, but an interesting spat is brewing on the Twin Cities’ transit scene. Last month, the Minneapolis City Council unanimously supported funding a streetcar project that would from Central Avenue in Northeast Minneapolis, down Nicollet Mall, and all the way to 46th Street in South Minneapolis. Soon after, the Met Council, […]

65 Years Later: Twin Cities Streetcars

[…] to save the streetcar system, as that didn’t start to takeoff until the 1960s when new freeways were dividing urban neighborhoods.
How Oslo Saved their Streetcars
However, dismantling of streetcars wasn’t just happening in the U.S. post-World War II. Oslo, Norway, a city with an excellent public transit system including six streetcar/tram lines, nearly shut down […]