Give trolleys a chance | AspenTimes.com

Give trolleys a chance

Gee, I wish I could have been there for Squirm Night. From The Aspen Times article it would seem that little thought was given to the big picture.

The vintage trolleys have been a huge success in every city where they have been introduced. New Orleans “Streetcar Named Desire” is being rebuilt. Its existing historic line is on the national historic register. The new riverfront line has been so wildly successful that they had to install a second track.

Seattle’s line has been extended. Memphis built a 2.5-mile line down “the longest mall in the world” that was so successful that within 10 years of its opening they doubled its length ? and the cars they used were just like Aspen’s.

Dallas’ trolley has been expanded numerous times and is now recognized as a legitimate part of the transportation system. With no more advertising than a posting on the Internet, Aspen had six serious offers for our trolleys ? one from as far away as New Zealand, another from Alaska.

Instead of considering the wonderful possibilities and enhancements the trolley would bring to Aspen, we worry about bicycles being able to cross the tracks ? well they can and do all over Europe.

We worry about pedestrian conflicts. Detroit’s historic trolley runs down a busy pedestrian sidewalk between the Cobo Convention Hall and the Renaissance Center! Memphis’ trolley shares its two-miles-plus mall tracks with horse carriages, pedestrians and bicycles.

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Look, I love Aspen, too. I’ve chosen to make this my home for more than 30 years. We need this for many reasons ? economic and social.

Aspen has lost a lot of charm. Truth be known, it’s not fun anymore and a tourist destination that’s not fun is on a road where we shouldn’t be.

I said it before: we citizens are absolutely protected by the strictures imposed by the ballot question. Please, for all our futures, give this a chance. Vote for the trolley.

Jon Busch

Aspen