‘It’s something new; something different:’ 3rd of 5 streetcars arrives in Milwaukee with fanfare

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MILWAUKEE -- The third of five new streetcars rolled into Milwaukee on Thursday morning, July 26. Each streetcar must go through weeks of testing before being cleared to carry passengers. Meanwhile, the city is preparing to train operators.

With each delivery, Jeff Polenske, city engineer, said people have a clearer image of what the streetcar is.

"We had one of our vehicles up at Bastille Days. We had hundreds of people that came to see it. We had people actually lined up before the vehicle arrived," Polenske said.

On Thursday, traffic around St. Paul Avenue and 4th Street was rerouted to make room for the 83,000-pound streetcar.


"It's something new. It's something different," said Don Ellison, visiting Milwaukee from Beach Park, Illinois.

The streetcar endeavor is not without its critics, but as far as the technology goes, Ellison said riding in one will change minds.

"Take a ride and you'll see it's quiet, air-conditioned and very comfortable," Ellison said.

Unloading the 67-foot modern transport took less than an hour. The vehicle, just like all the others, will have to log 600 miles before it can carry the general public.

"Probably in a week or so we'll have the system turned over to the operators so they can get their trainees out on the alignment," Polenske said.

CLICK HERE to learn more about the Milwaukee streetcar.

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