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Ride The Forest Park Trolley Instead of Adding To Congestion

August 17, 2012 Featured, Parks, Public Transit 11 Comments

After the success of the Downtown Trolley came the bright Forest Park Trolley. Yes, I know, It’s just a standard bus that’s been wrapped in a cartoon-like trolley design.  To paraphrase Al Franken on SNL, gosh darn it, people like it.

ABOVE: People board the Forest Park Trolley to visit the park

Wrap a standard bus and suddenly people that otherwise wouldn’t ride a bus are boarding. It’s a good thing too because so many people going to the attractions in Forest Park want to drive their car and park. Metro reroutes the #90 (Hampton) bus on the weekends because of the traffic congestion inside the park. Let me repeat that, Metro has to reroute a bus line that normally goes through the park because it’s too congested inside the park.

Enjoy the beautiful weekend.

— Steve Patterson


Currently there are "11 comments" on this Article:

  1. RyleyinSTL says:

    The Forest Park has far to many roads in it. Even better would be for the city to close many of and/or reduce the width of existing roads in the park. It’s a park after all, not an expressway or a parking lot. People could then park at some point around the perimeter of the park and walk to their destinations or take the trolley. This would actually save people all sorts of time as they wouldn’t be sitting in traffic.

    The very fact that a city park has vehicular traffic problems tells me we are doing something wrong. Remove the cars and give me my park back!

    • moe says:

      I disagree. This is the premier park of the area and one of the largest in the country. It is used by millions every year for just about every concievable reason and on an on.
      What I find more troubling is that many people from the surrounding counties come in, drive like idiots (don’t know how to use drive-a-rounds, use only the Hampton entrance), leave their trash, and my biggest pieve….refuse to help support it and the institutions within with their tax dollars. But I digress…
      Trollies are good but some of those wraps are just plain stupid. But people will drive for 2 reasons: they think the park is unsafe, they are too lazy and want to be the closest to the door (even if it means circling 20 times) and first to leave…and they want it free.
      But us park lovers know the backways along with the 10 other entrances/exits. Let the others suffer in those lines.

  2. Ed Golterman says:

    Park Lover: Those you call idiots pour $50 million a year into your money-bloated zoo and museums, and keep them going with their patronage and support. And you cut MUNY to 43 nights and ended express bus service a decade ago? With your arrogance the poorly planned access in and out and crime, you give us lots of reasons to stay away. And not just from your park.

    • moe says:

      This past season, the MUNY had 50 performances not 43 and has had 7 weeks of shows for years. Jefferson and St. Charles counties do not pay into the taxing district, which goes to support the institutions within the Park (Science Center, Zoo, Art Museum), the County’s Transportation Museum, and the Missouri Botanical Garden (located in South city)….the Park itself receives no funding from the tax district, instead relying on the City of St. Louis and the Friends of Forest Park Forever, a private group to pay for the ongoing maintenance. There are 11 entrances into the park with over 2000 parking spaces.
      The Science Center…one of the top 10, the Zoo… the best in the Country and still free admission. The Bot. Garden…one of the top 10 and leader of world-wide plant research. The MUNY…no tax money support, yet largest outdoor theater in the Country.
      Sorry if you think the money is wasted. Please continue to stay away then. With your attitude, you won’t be missed.

      • CallieJean1947 says:

        Amen to that, the last thing we need i someone like him complaing about something that he knows nothing about. The friends of the Park, ha done a wonderful job. The park is just beautiful.

    • CallieJean1947 says:

      We did not send you an engraved invitation to come to our parks or musuems. Please feel free to stay at home. There are thousands of people the really appreciate the free attractions in our marvelous park. Pleasejust stay away. I think the park will survive without you.

  3. Eric says:

    They tried the “trolley” idea in Forest Park around 15 years ago, I believe it failed then. If you are going to drive all the way to Forest Park, why get out and wait for a completely different and unfamiliar mode of transportation? If they were to add bus-only lanes or stopping areas so that the “trolley” would be noticeably more efficient than driving (and if the traffic made driving a real pain), I believe things would be different.

  4. Amanda Z. says:

    I think the trolley is a great idea but… this Saturday we attended the barrelroll at the grand basin, and then planned on taking the trolley to the zoo. We waited 50 minutes (sign says pickup every 20 minutes) at the #4 stop and the trolley never came. Although we got to watch 4 separate weddings show up to take photos at the basin – so the time spent was actually entertaining. We ended up leaving and as we were getting in our car the bus did finally arrive… only to PASS BY the stop! Where people were still waiting! We ended up finding a great parking spot by the zoo, so really what is the point of the trolley???

    I think the trolley could work if it was actually punctual. I will not recommend this option to anyone.

    • moe says:

      I don’t mean to bust your bubble, bt did you realize there is the North entrance to the Zoo…approximately 1500 feet from the top of Art Hill. Could have walked.

  5. ForestParkForever-TrolleyTeam says:

    Thank you for encouraging ridership on the Forest Park Trolley. Metro has logged more than 65,000 riders in 2012 since the service started on April 16th. Approximately one-third of riders board at the Forest Park MetroLink station, indicating the Trolley is serving as a connector for transit riders, both locals and out-of-town visitors alike. In addition, the Trolley also serves as a Park-and-Ride option. When the Trolley was called the Forest Park Shuttle, basically a standard Metro bus, the yearly ridership was between 26,000 and 44,000 riders. In 2011, when the bus was wrapped and re-branded as the Forest Park Trolley, the service hosted almost 90,000 riders. We are aware that traffic tie-ups continue to be a challenge, especially on beautiful weather days when our community & visitors want to take full advantage of the Park and the wonderful facilities & cultural institutions. We have hosted many discussions with Park staff, Metro planners & traffic experts regarding how to make improvements to the current service. Two changes implemented this year include: 1. adding an extra vehicle on the route during peak hours on weekends and 2. utilizing larger, low-floor busses that can transport more riders and better accommodate wheelchairs, scooters, strollers, etc… Other ideas have been discussed to improve the Trolley’s effectiveness and on-time performance, but each would create potential additional challenges, such as closing certain roads and/or modifying the Trolley Route (less stops and longer walking distances to desired destinations). Please know that our ultimate goal is to implement the best service possible within our resources. Amanda – I sincerely apologize that you had a negative experience with the Forest Park Trolley. We have a message into Metro to determine what might have happened. Can you confirm the date and approximate time this occurred? Did you by any chance catch the vehicle ID number?


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