All aboard, Issaquah, as downtown trolley starts service

October 16, 2012

Barbara Justice drives Issaquah Valley Trolley Car No. 519 to the Issaquah Train Depot on Oct. 14. By Michael Johnson

The long-envisioned Issaquah Valley Trolley started service Oct. 14, as organizers start limited service after more than a decade of planning.

The public can ride the streetcar from the Issaquah Train Depot, 50 Rainier Blvd. N., during limited weekend service from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. into November.

The streetcar runs from the depot to the bridge across the East Fork of Issaquah Creek at Darigold, about a half-mile north.

Though the track extends to Northwest Gilman Boulevard, additional work is necessary to prepare the track to accommodate the trolley. North of Northwest Gilman Boulevard, crews removed the track to create the East Lake Sammamish Trail.

Downtown Issaquah streetcar rides start Oct. 14

October 9, 2012

The long-planned Issaquah Valley Trolley is due to start service Oct. 14, as organizers start limited service after more than a decade of planning.

Issaquah Valley Trolley Project volunteers plan to host a dedication ceremony at the Issaquah Train Depot, 50 Rainier Blvd. N., at 1 p.m. and then start public rides.

The public can ride the streetcar during limited weekend service from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. into November.

The streetcar runs from the depot to the bridge across the East Fork of Issaquah Creek at Darigold, about a half-mile north.

Though the track extends to Northwest Gilman Boulevard, additional work is necessary to prepare the track to accommodate the trolley. North of Northwest Gilman Boulevard, crews removed the track to create the East Lake Sammamish Trail.

Experience 40 years of Issaquah History Museums milestones

October 9, 2012

In 40 years, the Issaquah History Museums has experienced numerous milestones.

  • 1972 — Issaquah Historical Society is founded.
  • 1972 — Issaquah Historical Society leases Gilman Town Hall from city.
  • 1973 — Gilman Town Hall opens as organization’s historical center.
  • 1983 — Society negotiates purchase of Issaquah Train Depot from city.
  • 1985 — Ground is broken on depot restoration project.
  • 1985 — Work on Gilman Town Hall remodel starts.
  • 1989 — Weyerhaeuser Corp. donates caboose to the organization.
  • 1992 — Issaquah Train Depot is added to the National Register of Historic Places.
  • 2004 — Issaquah Historical Society changes name to Issaquah History Museums.
  • 2005 — Puget Sound Energy donates historic Alexander House to the museums. The organization later donates the building to the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce for offices.
  • 2006 — Museums’ oral history project captures the stories and memories of about 25 narrators.
  • 2012 — Refurbished Issaquah Valley Trolley Project streetcar returns to Issaquah for service.

Downtown Issaquah Valley Trolley starts service soon

October 8, 2012

Issaquah Valley Trolley Car No. 519 stops at the Issaquah Train Depot. Contributed from Issaquah Valley Trolley Project

NEW — 8 a.m. Oct. 8, 2012

The long-planned Issaquah Valley Trolley is due to start service Oct. 14, as organizers start limited service after more than a decade of planning.

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Salmon Days Festival returns to downtown Issaquah

October 2, 2012

A chinook tries to surmount the weir Sept. 28 at the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery. By Greg Farrar

The ode to salmon migration, Issaquah’s iconic Salmon Days Festival, returns to downtown Issaquah on Oct. 6-7.

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Trolley returns, and supporters prepare for rides to start in October

August 28, 2012

The next stop for the Issaquah Valley Trolley is downtown Issaquah.

Traffic is stopped at Front Street North and Northwest Dogwood Street as the restored Issaquah Valley Trolley Project car makes its way to the Issaquah Train Depot barn. By Greg Farrar

On Aug. 23, a vintage streetcar completed a 1,659-mile trip from Ida Grove, Iowa, to Issaquah aboard a specialized flatbed trailer. The arrival marked a milestone in the $744,700 effort to refurbish the vehicle, restore downtown railroad track and prepare the streetscape for streetcar traffic.

Organizers plan to start offering rides to the public starting Oct. 14, a day after a celebration for the Issaquah History Museums’ 40th anniversary. The planned route stretches about a half-mile from the Issaquah Train Depot to the East Fork of Issaquah Creek at Darigold.

“It looked every bit as good as we expected it to — and probably better,” Issaquah Valley Trolley Project Chairwoman Jean Cerar said. “If you gave it just a cursory glance, actually, it kind of looked like the car that left, only brighter.”

Crews repainted the streetcar in the same cream-and-red color scheme, but beneath the surface, workers installed modern systems and revamped the battered interior. The result “has that new trolley smell to it,” Cerar said.

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Issaquah Valley Trolley returns / Aug. 23, 2012

August 28, 2012

Issaquah Valley Trolley to return after Iowa restoration

August 22, 2012

Issaquah Valley Trolley Streetcar No. 519 sits in the Gomaco Trolley Co. facility in Ida Grove, Iowa, as crews finish a monthslong restoration. Contributed by Gomaco Trolley Co.

NEW — 5 p.m. Aug. 22, 2012

Issaquah Valley Trolley Project organizers said a 1925 streetcar is due to return to Issaquah on Thursday after a monthslong restoration in Iowa.

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Issaquah Valley Trolley is back on track, poised to return

August 14, 2012

The historic Issaquah Valley Trolley Car No. 519 undergoes renovation at the Gomaco Trolley Co. facility in Ida Grove, Iowa. Contributed by Gomaco Trolley Co.

Quietly, after a decadeslong coal and timber boom fueled expansion, passenger rail service to Issaquah ceased 90 years ago.

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Issaquah trolley project experiences milestones, setbacks

August 14, 2012

Issaquah Valley Trolley Project organizers have experienced milestones and setbacks since spearheading the project to bring a historic trolley to Issaquah a dozen years ago.

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