Following up yesterday’s cover story about the challenges facing the George Benson Waterfront Streetcar, the Times is reporting today that officials from St. Louis have visited Seattle and are looking at possibly purchasing the streetcars, which are currently in storage. From the Times:
More bad news for those five beloved, 1920s waterfront streetcars that draw such emotional responses from Seattleites.
They could well be heading out of town.
The streetcars have been warehoused out of sight near the Metro bus complex just east of Safeco Field for the last seven years.
But at least they were still here, even if in limbo, as lonely reminders of the city’s quirkier past, giving hope to their fans that something could be done to save them.
Now it turns out that if you’re interested in buying them — yes, getting them out of here — Metro will give you a showing.
Go ahead, make ‘em an offer.
Just last week, Doug Campion, project manager for the Loop Trolley in St. Louis — a $43 million project that will run vintage streetcars, and is set to begin construction later this year — came to town to look them over.
Campion says about Seattle’s elegant streetcars, constructed with beautiful Tasmanian mahogany and white ash, “They’ve taken very good care of them. They’re certainly very nice.”
Now he’s back in St. Louis, putting together the numbers.
Metro says it’ll listen to an offer.
Jim Jacobson, Metro’s deputy general manager, says the classic trolleys “would be better served by serving people than having them parked.”
Full story here.