Jeramey Jannene
Eyes on Milwaukee

City Engaging Businesses Along The Hop Route

Mayor Tom Barrett personally delivers first of nearly 300 kits to businesses.

By - Oct 22nd, 2018 04:11 pm
Mayor Tom Barrett delivers a streetcar kit to The London Cleaners. Photo from the City of Milwaukee.

Mayor Tom Barrett delivers a streetcar kit to The London Cleaners. Photo from the City of Milwaukee.

In advance of The Hop’s grand opening weekend, the city is ramping up its efforts to engage businesses along the route. The streetcar system’s first phase, the M-Line, will open with a celebration held from November 2nd through the 4th.

The city is distributing approximately 275 kits to businesses located at ground level on or near the route.

The kits contain “Hop Here” posters so businesses can let the public know they’re easily accessible via the starter line, information on how to participate in the opening weekend by offering specials or hosting events and information on safety, how to ride, the route map and operating hours.

Mayor Tom Barrett delivered the first two kits on Friday afternoon to Ouzo Cafe and London Cleaners along N. Milwaukee St.

“We are distributing these kits to businesses along The Hop route and asking that they ‘Hop Along’ as long-term partners of this project” said Barrett. “We know how important businesses will be in informing riders and in the future success of The Hop.”

November 3rd’s activities are intended to center around thanking and promoting businesses that have had to deal with the system’s construction.

Rides on the system will be free through at least next November 2019 courtesy of a $10-million, 12-year sponsorship agreement with Potawatomi Hotel and Casino. No tickets will be required to ride; riders can simply get on the vehicles at any of the stations.

In delivering his 2019 budget proposal, Barrett said last month the system was “on time and on budget.” Due to a federal grant for transit operations and Potwatomi’s sponsorship agreement, the streetcar has no impact on the 2018 or 2019 city budgets.

Following the launch party, the system will begin operating on its normal schedule. Service will be provided Monday through Friday from 5 a.m. until midnight, Saturday from 7 a.m. until midnight and Sunday from 7 a.m. until 10 p.m.

The 2.1-miles-long first phase connects Westown and the Milwaukee Intermodal Station with the Historic Third WardEast Town and the Lower East Side. The lakefront line expansion, the system’s second phase, is scheduled to begin service in 2020. The two systems have a combined capital cost of $128.1 million funded by federal grants and tax-incremental financing districts.

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More about the Milwaukee Streetcar

For more project details, including the project timeline, financing, route and possible extensions, see our extensive past coverage.

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