When the Cincinnati Bell Connector launched in 2016, the city buzzed. Reactions were mixed. Among some excitement, many residents questioned if this form of public transportation could be as successful in Cincinnati as it is in other cities. The last two years of the Connector’s operation suggest no: Streetcar ridership declined by roughly 50,000 passengers.
Mike and Laura Noyes, owners of Riverside Food Tours, are hopeful those numbers will reverse. The couple recently jumped at the opportunity to include the streetcar in their tasty tours. “Many people have never been on the streetcar,” Laura says. “[After our tour], they’ll walk away with an all-day pass to continue to explore the city.”
Throughout August, Riverside’s Streetcar Food Tour will transport riders to five to six eateries in the downtown area, from the Banks to Over-the-Rhine, four days a week. Laura says she’s driven by her passion of helping people experience Cincinnati’s ever-changing landscape in new ways. She encourages people to embrace the streetcar’s unique experience. “Our public tours max out, so using [a different form of public transportation] wouldn’t accommodate enough people…the streetcar has been very well-suited to our needs.”