An undated photo showing a streetcar of the former Louisville Railway Company.
A streetcar current operating in New Orleans
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The Portland Business Association wants Louisville Metro Government to get on board with their idea to enhance the Metro by way of old time streetcars.
The association says the streetcar service of 1940s era PCC streetcars would get a lot of tourism because it would be like taking a trip back in time. The goal would be to connect Louisville's Highlands and NuLu areas with the Russell, Portland and Shawnee neighborhoods.
"I think it will show a permanent commitment into the infrastructure of the community. It would create a tourist draw, a tourist attraction especially using the 1940s era trolleys," said John Owen of Portland Business Association.
Owen said the trolley could break the divide in the city.
"It would stop the dividing line on 9th Street for people," said Owen. "If a trolley was running from the Highlands and Bardstown Road to Baxter and Market all the way to Shawnee, folks would at least ride it once or twice for the curiosity of it."
Owen said the city already has existing streetcar tracks buried under many streets, like Market Street and Bardstown Road.
"They're planning on resurfacing the street on Market Street anyway between Cecil Avenue and 24th," Owen said. "So when they mill down the street to pave we're saying let's go ahead and mill them down to expose the car tracks and that way the car tracks are exposed and in place."
According to Owen, the tracks can be uncovered for $50,000 per mile. Owen said that's actually saving the Metro money because it would cost $1.5 million per mile to build the tracks new.
They're waiting to have a meeting with Metro Public Works.