03/27/14 — City planning to offer trolley rides downtown

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City planning to offer trolley rides downtown

By Matt Caulder
Published in News on March 27, 2014 1:46 PM

Goldsboro residents had a chance to try out a new way of getting around downtown today.

A trolley bus, modeled to look like a streetcar, ferried people around downtown, starting at City Hall -- an experiment on a possible new addition to the area.

The bus is being showcased through GATEWAY to allow people to see what Goldsboro could be getting for downtown transportation if the city is chosen for a $1.3 million grant.

The grant, funded through the Federal Transit Administration, would require a 20 percent match.

GATEWAY Executive Director Lynn Lamberth said that about half of the city's $265,600 match could come from the state.

"This is the kind of trolley we could get if we get possible funding for it," Ms. Lamberth said. "This would be ideally for our downtown route from the transfer station over to Center Street or to the courthouse."

The trolley is being provided to the city for the demonstration at no cost.

GATEWAY applied for five new buses in the grant to replace high mileage buses in its fleet.

The five buses Ms. Lamberth is seeking to replace have close to 300,000 miles on them each.

Ms. Lamberth is seeking funding for three 30-foot, low-floor buses, one 25-foot, low-floor bus and the trolley bus.

"I think it's really great timing. The new buses would help us rebrand and realign our fleet as we move forward," Ms. Lamberth said. "This will help the system move into a different light."

The city also has three 35-foot buses not eligible for replacement through the program.

Ms. Lamberth expects to hear back about the application in May.