Oklahoma City gets first new streetcar in decades

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In a photo from the Oklahoma City Streetcar Facebook page, the city's first new streetcar is moved into the shop after its delivery on Monday.
Oklahoma City Streetcar

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. — Oklahoma City has received its first working streetcar in more than 50 years, for a system scheduled to begin operation later this year.

The Liberty streetcar arrived Monday after a four-day trip by truck from Brookville Equipment Corp.’s factory in Brookville, Pa. It is the first of seven cars for the system, aiming for a December 2018 opening. The others are expected to be delivered by July.

The Liberty streetcar is the only model currently operating in North America that uses a built-in battery to allow operation over portions of its route without overhead wires. Similar cars are operating in Dallas and Detroit.

The 4.6-mile, figure-eight-shaped streetcar line will provide service every 7 to 14 minutes Mondays through Saturdays, with more frequent service to the Bricktown entertainment district on Fridays, Saturdays, and for special events. Annual ridership is estimated to be up to 500,000.

The initial car bears the red-and-pink “redbud” paint scheme. Others will bear shades of “Bermuda green” and blue. The Oklahoma capital’s previous streetcar system shut down in 1947. Much of the new streetcar’s trackage is being built on streets on which the prior system ran.

Note: The author also serves as a consultant to Herzog Transit Services Inc. and is providing writing and research assistance to its start-up management team for the Oklahoma City Streetcar.

NEWSWIRETrains News Wire

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