Author Topic: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend  (Read 63462 times)

urbanlibertarian

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #15 on: January 04, 2014, 09:27:02 AM »
Congratulations to Mike, Steven and everyone else involved. I say it's about time JTA got out of their comfort zone and tried something different.
Even though they are still being their stick in mud selves by only offering a once a month deal. What is that all about?
I speak on this subject as a former proposer of such a trolley about 5 or 6 years ago.
We had a meeting with JTA and DVI (pretty sure Steven was there also) to discuss what JTA could do to help the fledgling nightlife on Bay Street and when it was suggested they run a Fri/Sat night trolley from Five Points to San Marco to DT their spokesman, Mike Miller looked at me as though I was from Mars.
Anyway, hope it works out.
It is just too frustrating dealing with these city/state monoliths.

Mark, maybe the Elbow group, Ian Ranne, and some San Marco bars could try a private version of this between DT, Springfield and San Marco.  Just a thought.
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fieldafm

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #16 on: January 04, 2014, 10:21:15 AM »
Grassroots did and still does have passes for sale.  Sorry someone told you they didn't.  They do in fact have them for sale.

Walgreens did not receive passes. There was a miscommunication about their availability at Walgreens and I personally apologize for that. 

You can buy passes today (pending availability) at:
Grassroots
Green Man Gourmet
Let Them Eat Cake
Open Road Bicycles
European Street Cafe
Bold City Brewery
Intuition Ale Works

If you get on a trolley tonight and need a pass and have a credit card, there will be someone on board from 6-9pm that can sell you a pass (tonight only). 

ProjectMaximus

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #17 on: January 04, 2014, 10:56:03 AM »
If you get on a trolley tonight and need a pass and have a credit card, there will be someone on board from 6-9pm that can sell you a pass (tonight only).

Bingo! This is awesome. So that is true for all the trolleys between 6 and 9? I'm counting on you Mike!  ;D

fieldafm

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #18 on: January 04, 2014, 11:43:01 AM »
There will be a LIMITED amount of cards on board tonight from 6-9pm, so I woud encourage you to buy a pass ahead of time at one of the retailers listed above.

marksjax

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #19 on: January 04, 2014, 12:11:10 PM »
Congratulations to Mike, Steven and everyone else involved. I say it's about time JTA got out of their comfort zone and tried something different.
Even though they are still being their stick in mud selves by only offering a once a month deal. What is that all about?
I speak on this subject as a former proposer of such a trolley about 5 or 6 years ago.
We had a meeting with JTA and DVI (pretty sure Steven was there also) to discuss what JTA could do to help the fledgling nightlife on Bay Street and when it was suggested they run a Fri/Sat night trolley from Five Points to San Marco to DT their spokesman, Mike Miller looked at me as though I was from Mars.
Anyway, hope it works out.
It is just too frustrating dealing with these city/state monoliths.

Mark, maybe the Elbow group, Ian Ranne, and some San Marco bars could try a private version of this between DT, Springfield and San Marco.  Just a thought.


If it were reasonably affordable that would be a possibility and that cost issue was discussed before with certain bars, The Landing, etc. I use the Metro Jacksonville Pub Crawls as a template for costs associated with using the JTA. Steven and Mike can chime in on that subject with better info than I have but I seem to remember a $500 fee for one bus in talks with JTA (unrelated to Pub Crawls which were done later on).

Of course, one bus isn't enough and then you add a second or third bus and it starts adding up. There typically isn't enough in a bar's budget to be able to self finance these buses. The cost (for the buses) are the same whether you charge the customers or not. My proposal was free ridership which was similar to (at the time) the Beaches Trolley (first year was free) which was a big success. Which became less of a success the next year when they started charging and then kept changing the route.

Basically, I gave a suggestion that I thought might work and being naive thought that for the good of the community that JTA would get on board (pardon the pun) and finance this route to help make DT a destination for nightlife.

My expertise is in hospitality (food and beverage) and admittedly I know little about public transportation. But my argument to JTA when they were saying they don't have the money to do this was that I pointed out all the empty buses I see night after night repeating the same routes with little or no ridership. This could be a route than was packed each night and had built in ridership potential.

They could not get their collective heads around the concept that this was a potential money maker for them and not a for sure money loser.

My premise was that the COJ had made DT a priority to become a nightlife destination but had not engaged JTA in this goal. I was trying to do that. I was not successful obviously.

I hold no ill will towards JTA but I came away with an understanding just how hard it is to get them to change their way of thinking and to think outside the box for a change. This is why this new trolley idea is such a big deal as most people don't realize how difficult it has been for those involved (not me) to have accomplished this new trolley. I tip my hat to Mike, Steven, RAP and all others who got this done. 
« Last Edit: January 04, 2014, 12:19:29 PM by marksjax »

marksjax

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #20 on: January 04, 2014, 12:36:45 PM »
Well said Stephen (sorry in my haste that I misspelled your first name).

Stephen is the best source for any and all of the history and the trials and tribulations of operating a business Downtown and dealing with such entities as the COJ, City Council, JTA, DVI (& the old JEDC), JSO, JEA to name a few.

Stephen was indeed the pioneer who dealt with a bucketful of stuff that we don't have to deal with now because of him.

And, in my humble opinion, all business operators that have followed in DT, Springfield, Riverside/Avondale & San Marco owe him a debt of gratitude for what he has accomplished.

Transatlantic

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #21 on: January 04, 2014, 02:58:04 PM »
Who is this trolley meant for?  When I see articles written about it I hear that it is meant to alleviate parking issues in local neighborhoods.  5 Points after dark rarely has parking problems, and it's really not that hard to find a parking spot near Avondale/Park&King if you're willing to walk a block or two to your destination.  Some people might not like to have to park so far away, but the problem is that if a short walk from your car is too much to put up with then waiting around in 50 degree weather for a trolley to show up will probably not be very appealing either.

ProjectMaximus

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #22 on: January 04, 2014, 03:12:27 PM »
I agree that right now there's not really a parking issue. Some people see it differently.

I'd say it's for people who don't want to drive...primarily those who live in the area and don't want to drive at all, and secondarily for those from elsewhere who don't want to drive back and forth during the night.

ProjectMaximus

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #23 on: January 04, 2014, 03:13:33 PM »
There will be a LIMITED amount of cards on board tonight from 6-9pm, so I woud encourage you to buy a pass ahead of time at one of the retailers listed above.

Ok, thanks for the heads up. If I'm riding soon after 6pm I hope I'm ok, but I'll keep in mind that there's no guarantee.

Coolyfett

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #24 on: January 04, 2014, 04:05:09 PM »
Hope this all works out & there are enough destinations in place to bring crowds out. The more options the more riders im assuming....
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fieldafm

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #25 on: January 04, 2014, 04:24:37 PM »
Who is this trolley meant for?  When I see articles written about it I hear that it is meant to alleviate parking issues in local neighborhoods.  5 Points after dark rarely has parking problems, and it's really not that hard to find a parking spot near Avondale/Park&King if you're willing to walk a block or two to your destination.  Some people might not like to have to park so far away, but the problem is that if a short walk from your car is too much to put up with then waiting around in 50 degree weather for a trolley to show up will probably not be very appealing either.

The trolley is meant to give people an alternative to driving... which is how a) the neighborhood was originally built and b) how walkable neighborhoods work

The diversity in people using the trolley is something that has been pretty incredible to witness.  That tells me that people will use alternatives if a reliable and convenient one exists. 

thelakelander

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #26 on: January 05, 2014, 07:50:28 AM »
Watch MATT ABOUT JAX: Take a ride with Matt on the Riverside Avondale Night Trolley

http://jacksonville.com/video/entertainment/2014-01-04/watch-matt-about-jax-take-ride-matt-riverside-avondale-night-trolley
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fieldafm

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #27 on: January 05, 2014, 08:10:11 AM »
Pretty good crowds last night. Thanks to all that came out!

One of the coolest things last night was that Pele's Wood Fire set up a 32" tv that showed the trolley website, so you could literally see where the trolleys were from your seat. 

Kay

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #28 on: January 05, 2014, 08:21:08 AM »
Pretty good crowds last night. Thanks to all that came out!

One of the coolest things last night was that Pele's Wood Fire set up a 32" tv that showed the trolley website, so you could literally see where the trolleys were from your seat.

That's awesome.  Let's see if we can get all the establishments to do that.

mtraininjax

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Re: Riverside Avondale Night Trolley Launch This Weekend
« Reply #29 on: January 05, 2014, 11:53:31 AM »
A few observations, and I already sent a note to Carmen and Jim Love on these items.

Great turnout, we were on XXX3 to start the night and our trolley was packed, we took it from Belvedere and Park, then we picked up people at Orsay and really got loaded down near the Goal Post, as I think people parked in the parking lot of Espeto and headed into Riverside from there. By the time we got to Ingleside and St. Johns, the bus was busting at the seams. Bluefish was packed, bar, seats, inside and out.

Headed to Park and King, and not sure of that trolley but we had to stand this time, and then most of the people at Pele's were all trolley people, it was hopping too. Then we wanted to head to Intuition for a beer and with no trolleys around (seems they really liked to follow each other all night long, when we needed a ride), so we walked. Eh Ghad, I know, but then we picked up XXX3 again and this time, the driver had to take a 10 minute break at Stockton and Rosselle. Wish we would have known he was taking a 10 minute break, we could have picked up another Trolley to take us to Riverside.

In Riverside, went to O'brothers, Black Sheep, and Buck at O'Brothers said no one informed him of the crush of people, they were packed inside and out. Black Sheep was not as full as I thought, but by this time it was late, but was still fun.

The only real issue I had was that the app stopped tracking the last bus. The app was working, but it showed the bus stuck at Park and King, its last GPS tracking position. So we had no idea where the last bus was located. 5 Points may be a safe place, but no where is necessarily safe at 1:40 AM and with ladies looking for a trolley, it was not something I want to repeat in February. JTA said the GPS failed on the bus, but there was no backup, they used cell phones with the last trip, surely a backup cell phone could have been used?

I took the last 6 passes that Intuition had when I was there yesterday afternoon, so they sold out theirs. Hope others did too. Looking forward to the rider numbers.
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