MysticKnyght (mysticknyght) wrote in streetcar_fans,

Streetcars in Mid-City

clicky image for a larger version

Perley A. Thomas streetcar 922, departing Beauregard Terminal.

New Orleans streetcars in operation today are "double-ended" cars. When they reach the end of the line and are ready to go back, the front becomes the back and vice-versa. At the end of the line, like Beauregard Circle near City Park in this photo, the operator will pull the streetcar into the terminal, stop it, and then change the trolley pole from which the streetcar gets power. The one in what was the rear of the car coming into the terminal is pulled down so it doesn't make contact with the electrical wire overhead. The pole at what was the front of the streetcar is released, so it makes contact with the wire. The poles are wired to the motors on the streetcar such that the motor will turn one way or the other depending on which pole is active. When the switch is made, the streetcar is powered back on, and the operator will leave at the scheduled departure time.

Beauregard Circle is where City Park Avenue, Wisner Blvd., and Esplanade Avenue come together. The circle also feeds into City Park, to the New Orleans Museum of Art. The streetcar terminal at this location was constructed in 2002-2003. In the early part of the 20th century, streetcars ran on the short stretch of City Park Avenue seen above, when the Canal and Esplanade lines ran as belt service.

Riding the streetcar to Beauregard Terminal is one of the best ways to get from downtown to City Park to see the lights of "Celebration in the Oaks," or in the spring, to get over to the Fair Grounds racetrack for the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival.

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