New trolley experience coming to Bowling Green in the next month

BOWLING GREEN, Ky.-A new hop-on, hop-off trolley tourism experience is coming to Bowling Green.

“I mean it’s gonna be huge,” said Bobby Rabold, board member for the Historic Railpark & Train Museum.

The project is four years in the making. In 2018 a trolley was brought to Bowling Green for a three-day test run.

“We’ve been working on it for four solid years. There were some lulls during that time but it got really serious in the spring of this year,” said Rabold.

Now that vision is finally coming to fruition. Fiscal court has approved nearly half a million dollars in ARPA funding to make the trolley dream become a reality.

“It’s a half a million dollar project. That’s a lot of money for a non-profit tourist attraction to put up,” said Historic Railpark & Train Museum Executive Director Jamie Johnson.

The trolley will be run by the Historic Railpark…their first vehicle that can actually move!

“In our eyes it makes sense for the Railpark to own and operate the trolley system because you know trains and trolleys are not that far apart and because our trains don’t go anywhere that’s ok, we can hop on this trolley and it absolutely can go somewhere,” said Johnson.

The first route will start at the National Corvette Museum, hoping to pull thousands of travelers from I-65.

“That’s where people are getting off I-65 and that’s the opportunity right there to grab those people’s attention and then to bring them down into Bowling Green and let them explore the other options,” said Johnson.

The first stop on the trolley route is the Railpark, circle around downtown, drive up the hill of Western Kentucky University while showcasing historic homes downtown and then loop back to the museum…all while picking up and dropping off tourists.

“In the end it’s all about increasing tourism. And when we increase tourism that increases hotel stays, restaurant visits, retail sales, gas purchases,” said Rabold.

Adding convenience and entertaining transportation to the Bowling Green tourist experience.

The trolley will make its way to Bowling Green in early October. Historic tours are expected to start this spring.

Ron Murphy has also donated $50,000 to the trolley project.