The long awaited and often debated Milwaukee streetcar will begin passenger service on Nov. 2.
Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett announced the starting date of The Hop on Friday, calling the streetcar a “tremendous asset to the city” and one of the key contributors to the renaissance being experienced in downtown Milwaukee.
“This is a historical milestone years in the making and one we’re excited to celebrate with the entire community,” Barrett said. “Whether you live downtown, work downtown, or just enjoy experiencing all of the incredible energy, excitement and amenities the city has to offer, ride The Hop and help keep Milwaukee moving forward.”
The $124 million streetcar project was approved by the Common Council in 2015.
The Hop will be free for the first year of operation as part of a $10 million, 12-year naming sponsorship deal with Potawatomi Hotel & Casino.
No tickets or vouchers will be required and passengers can wait for the vehicles at one of the 18 stations along the M-Line every 10 to 15 minutes. The L-Line, which will service destinations along the lakefront, is slated to open in 2020.
The 40-ton, 67-foot streetcars will undergo 1,000 hours of testing before Nov. 2.
Beginning at noon on Nov. 2, several “Grand Hop-ening” weekend events are planned around Cathedral Square Park, adjacent to The Hop’s eastbound and westbound platforms on Kilbourn Avenue.
The entire “Grand Hop-ening” weekend events will be announced in the coming weeks.
The Hop will operate from 5 a.m. to 12 a.m. Monday through Friday; 7 a.m. to 12 a.m. Saturday and 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Sunday.