According to RTA, in 2006 vehicles that resemble historic-looking trolleys will be used on downtown loop routes.
Tuesday, RTA voted to purchase 11 low-floor trolleys to replace loop buses from 1991.
The trolleys, which operate on ultra-low-sulfur “clean” diesel fuel, will be purchased from the Optima Bus Corp. for a total price of $3.5 million, with an option to purchase 6 more trolleys later. Board members said they found the trolley “wonderful and exciting.”
RTA operates 23 loop buses, so the trolleys will make up about half the fleet, and operate on the downtown portion. Loop buses are 30-feet long -- about 10 feet shorter than traditional buses. Each trolley will have 30 seats and two spaces for wheelchairs
The trolleys are part of an overall plan to beef up downtown service, a plan that includes the following:
- Two new loop routes to connect entertainment and restaurant venues with parking.
- A service frequency of 10 minutes.
- Service until midnight six days a week
- Specially trained “ambassadors” to serve as operators