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Portland Lets Cincinnati Borrow their Streetcar for a Weekend

Photo: Ross Hamilton / The Oregonian

Need some cheering up after this week’s election results? I thought so. Then head to 5th and Walnut tomorrow at 1 PM, where Mayor Mallory will officially introduce Cincinnati to a real live modern streetcar, shipped here from Portland specifically for the occasion. The streetcar will be on public display through Wednesday afternoon.

Here is the announcement from transit advocate John Schneider:

Dear Streetcar Supporter,

At 1:00p. on Friday, Mayor Mallory will introduce Cincinnatians to the modern streetcar.

This first modern streetcar made in American since the 1930’s will be positioned at the corner of Fifth and Walnut, near Graeter’s. You’ll be able to inspect it up close and personal, walk inside, and representatives of its manufacturer, United Streetcar of Clackamas, Oregon, will be on hand to answer your questions.

This is a perfect opportunity to pierce the veil of misunderstanding about what our city is trying to do with this project. And so I’m asking you, as one of our most loyal streetcar supporters, to do two things:

* First and foremost, come to the Mayor’s 1:00p news conference at Fifth and Walnut tomorrow. The forecast is for a 30% chance of rain with temperatures in the forties. A huge turnout in iffy weather will be a terrific sign of support. Bring a friend, bring a skeptic, bring a raincoat.

* The streetcar will be in Cincinnati through Wednesday afternoon. Over the next five days, arrange to meet people you know on Fountain Square and show them what we’ve been talking about all these years. There is nothing like seeing the real thing.

This particular vehicle will soon be placed in service as part of the Portland Streetcar fleet. People have gone to a lot of trouble to get it here. It’s a one-time opportunity for Cincinnati and nearby cities with similar ambitions. Let’s make the most of it.

See you there,

John Schneider