• Michael Laxer

Did you know that until 1959 there was a Niagara region intercity streetcar route?

Prior to the 1960s there were many intercity streetcar routes of this type across North America and many of these were public.

Streetcar picks up passengers at the corner of Main St. and Lock St. in Port Dalhousie, Ontario, 1948


The Niagara, St. Catharines and Toronto Railway, which existed from 1899 to 1959, ran intercity streetcars between and within the communities of St. Catharines, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Welland, Thorold, Niagara Falls and Port Dalhousie. In addition to this it had several bus routes. Travelers could go to Toronto via boat and other connections.


After 1918 it was publicly owned. The streetcar lines were all electric.


Prior to the 1960s there were many intercity streetcar routes of this type across North America and many of them were public.


During the 1950s especially the vast majority of them were shut down or converted to bus only in no small part due to pressure brought by the automotive and fossil fuel companies as well as due to the shifting of public transportation funds to things like the building of highways.


The loss of intercity routes like these that connected many smaller communities to each other and to bigger cities is coming back to haunt.


Lines like this desperately need to be recreated for obvious environmental reasons as well as to allow affordable public intercity transit for everyone.

A car travels across Twelve Mile Creek in St. Catharines, 1930



Passengers board in Thorold, 1949

0 comments

Recent Posts

See All