After running for a semester, the trolley has proven itself a distinctive figure on Furman's campus. However commonplace the trolley is now, each class has a different memory of this campus staple.
The class of 2023 can attest to the long-standing use of the trolley. During their freshman year, 2019-2020 school year, the trolley was affectionately known as the “drunk trolley” because it dropped off and picked up students downtown on the weekends. Unlike now, the trolley was not a mode of transportation to and from class. Instead, a safe ride filled that job. The class of 2023 did not get much use out of the trolley before being sent home during the pandemic.
For the classes of 2024 and 2025, the trolley used to be surrounded by mystery and was only known as a magical pastime that fell victim to the pandemic. Many students can remember walking and driving by the playhouse when the trolley was parked outside it going unused. During this time, maintenance took place, such as a new paint job, needed to restore it to its current form.
For the class of 2026, the trolley has only ever been a mode of transportation around campus. Some freshmen may hear rumors of the “drunk trolley” and the possibility of its return, but there's been no confirmation of that so far.
Regardless of how students remember the trolley over the years, all students enjoy its current job. The trolley began running its campus route in the Fall and was slow to gain popularity. Many students did not know it was running and were slow to change habits. Personally, I was slow to change my habits of walking or driving my own car. Over the semester and with the return of students in January, the trolley has proven it is here to stay. The service is providing itself a valuable alternative to driving and navigating restrictive parking or walking on a rainy day. It is also a greener alternative for campus transportation. As a sustainability science major, many of my classes have discussed how to tackle car use on campus. Trolley ridership is a good stepping stone.
The trolley runs a continuous route stopping at key locations on campus such as the library, North Village G, and the PAC. These stops allow students to easily get to where they are going. The route and times can be found on the LiveSafe app. For students who are familiar with public transportation outside of Furman, the app is similar to a bus or train schedule where riders can view where it currently is and when it will arrive at the next stop. This allows students to effectively plan their way to class.
The future of the Furman trolley is bright. It made its off-campus debut during the FUSAB Winter Ball. This use can possibly act as a stepping stone for future off-campus uses. On-campus steps could include adding a stop near North Village A-C to allow those residents easy access to the trolley or extending the service later into the day. Regardless of any additional tasks the trolley takes on, its campus route has already gained immense popularity among the student body.
Check LiveSafe to find out where you can pick up the Trolley!