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CityLynx Gold Line streetcar set to open July 14 in uptown Charlotte

On Monday, crews were working to get the rail ready for the new streetcar section that opens in July.
On Monday, crews were working to get the rail ready for the new streetcar section that opens in July. ddeaton@charlotteobserver.com

Charlotte’s first electric streetcar line in 77 years is set to open July 14 with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Time Warner Cable Arena.

The city’s electric streetcar service stopped running in 1938, but a federal grant for $25 million has helped revive what will be known as the CityLynx Gold Line, said Hillary Ryan, CATS spokeswoman.

The total cost of the project was $37 million.

The 1.5-mile line will run from the Charlotte Transportation Center to Novant Health Presbyterian Medical Center and includes six stops.

Ryan said there will be three streetcars equipped to carry 60 passengers each at no cost to riders.

The streetcars won’t travel faster than 16 miles an hour, and Ryan said they’ll probably travel even slower than that.

She said CATS also commissioned a New Orleans artist to create art glass that incorporates local history at each of the six stop shelters.

The streetcar project has been debated for at least six years, as city leaders consider how to pay for it and whether it will be worth the investment.

The second phase of the streetcar project would extend the line to Johnson C. Smith University to the west and the Elizabeth neighborhood to the east. The city recently was recommended for a $75 million federal grant to help pay for it, along with the city’s share of $75 million.

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Twitter: @h_fowl

CityLynx Gold Line hours

This is the schedule CATS expects for the streetcar, once it opens in July.

Monday-Thursday: 6 a.m.-11 p.m.

Friday: 6 a.m.-12 a.m.

Saturday: 8 a.m.-12 a.m.

Sunday: 9 a.m.-7 p.m.

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