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BrandonTO416

Memphis' Monorail & Trolley

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You can see the Mud Island monorail in the left background behind the spired Morgan Keegan tower, with the main street mall in the center:

skyline-b1152.jpg

Monorail from Mud Island looking into downtown:

IndexStock-238567.jpg

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Cool. I didn't realize that so many cities had trolley systems. Is it an extensive system, or just a single line?

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I remember seeing that monorail a long time ago (it's been there for a while). But I don't remember it going very many places. Anyone got a map for the monorail and trolley system in Memphis?

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Pretty cool. I wonder if they work in colder climates.

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I found a map that has the trolley system on it...although it is hard to see. There are main street, riverfront, & medical center trolley lines. Anyone have any better maps? Also any maps of the monorail?

downtown.jpg

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The monorail system just connects downtown Memphis with a park on the southern tip of Mud Island. I believe that's the only way the park is accessible. On the island north of the park is Harbortown, an urbanist community developed about 10-15 years ago.

There are three streetcar lines, two downtown--Main Street and Riverfront (4.5 miles--and one which connects downtown with midtown--Medical Center (2.5 miles).

The Medical Center line open in January 2004.

From the MATA webpage:

"The Medical Center Rail Extension will provide a transportation and economic development link between the Central Business District and Medical Center and will expand transit service options for employees, residents and visitors. This corridor has high density development, significant concentrations of households without autos, many elderly people, and others who rely on transit to access medical facilities for care and employment. The rail line will enhance development efforts that are already underway and provide a catalyst for redevelopment in other areas of the corridor."

The lines operate from 6 AM--midnight weekdays, and 9AM--1AM weekends, and run every 5 to 10 minutes.

http://www.matatransit.com/mainstreettrolley.html

The total system presently carries 800,000 riders yearly and will total 7 miles when Medical Center is completed.

http://www.railwaypreservation.com/vintage...ley/memphis.htm

An interesting note:

In 1974, a Memphis citizens group stopped the construction of interstate 40 through Overton Park and midtown, which would have destroyed the heart of the city. The streetcar system was built with those unused highway construction funds, after the city filed suit to get the money for transit.

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It's nice to hear that they kept the freeway from tearing apart the heart of the city. Freeways divided so many neighborhoods it's sickening. And thanks for the info on the monorail & the streetcars.

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I didn't know the trolley system was that extensive. Memphis is definately a city I'm going to have to visit one day.

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Glad you guys enjoy the pics. It isn't a view of downtown Memphis you get to see very often!

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