Astoria--the Astoria Riverfront Trolley.
The Riverfront Trolley is single-vehicle operation which, as the name indicates, operates along a 2.6 mile stretch along the Columbia River in Astoria, Oregon. The trolley itself a 1913-vintage electric trolley (powered by a tow-along diesel generator) known as "Old 300". The tracks--like many heritage railways--are an abandoned freight line. And it's probably a stretch to refer to the Trolley as "transit". It is a heritage railway, it runs infrequently (45 minute round trips, with service only during daylight hours), it isn't ADA compliant in the least, it's staffed by volunteers, and the conductor (the trolley has a separate conductor and motorman) doubles as a tour guide. But:
- Rides cost a dollar. Two dollars gets you a day pass. Most heritage or excursion railways, geared towards tourists, cost an arm and a leg. (A single 1-2 zone pass on MAX, for comparison, costs more than $2--unless you're in the Free Rail Zone, at least).
- It runs seven days a week during the summer months.
- The stop spacing (600m between stops) is decidedly transit-like.
- Unlike most heritage railways, which only offer end-to-end or round-trip service, and are generally not useful as transit--the line has 8 scheduled stops (complete with modern, albeit simple, platforms), and even will accept hails from along the tracks.
(A bit of a disclaimer. While I have no connection to the Astoria Riverfront Trolley, my godfather was a volunteer for them for several years.)
The line has an interesting history. The trolley itself, acquired from the San Antonio Museum Association, was originally tasked with hauling passengers in the Alamo City, before being mothballed. It has undergone several restorations, and at one point ran on the Willamette Shore trolley line (which runs along the Jefferson Branch), and later at the now-defunct Glenwood Trolley Park near Gales Creek.
In 1998, when the Glenwood Trolley Park ceased operations, the trolley was leased by the Astoria Riverfront Trolley Association. A group of local volunteers then restored the trolley, and the trolley service started operation in 1999. Two years later, a full-time maintenance facility was built, and in 2005 the ARTA purchased the trolley outright from the San Antonio Museum Association for US$50,000.
Other interesting links: