Over the weekend, I took a ride on the new streetcar! Here are some random thoughts I had while riding it.
- It seems like similar cars to the ones in South Lake Union.
- Still, I was super excited riding it. It felt very much like it will be integrated into the city in a way that the line in South Lake Union hasn’t been.
- Unlike when the light rail opened, all of the stops are places that are easy enough to get to, as a downtown resident who walks and bikes most trips. It still was pretty cool seeing familiar places through a streetcar window.
- The next stop projection at the front was a nice touch. It was several stops ahead rather than just the one. Might make it easier for tourists or other people unfamiliar with the area. I’d like to see that on ST trains and maybe on buses going forward.
- Traffic was an issue. A car tried to get too far forward in a turn when we were coming and the streetcar had to break pretty hard. It was the sort of thing a bus could maneuver around, but we had to stop while the driver sorted themselves out. It’ll probably be worse in rush hour. Still, once people are used to the light rail, maybe they’ll drive better. Or, that’s not how Seattle drivers work traditionally. We’ll see.
- Maybe it’s the fact that I lived in London and have fond memories of hopping off and on the circle line more or less at random, but when I look at the map, I feel like we could eventually make the streetcar a big circle. It seems like there would be some engineering challenges crossing I-5 in the Northern part of the map, and I don’t know about the parts that are single track. But it seems like a long-term goal for the streetcars.