Kingsbury


Transit

The first street railway to operate in this area was that of the Lindell Railway Company in 1892. It ran out Delmar from Taylor to DeBaliviere and thence south to its terminus at what is now the Field House in Forest Park. The old streetcar barn and power house at Delmar and DeBaliviere was originally a Lindell installation. This line later ran further west on Delmar as the Olive-Delmar car line. The Union Avenue car line was originally a division of the St. Louis and Suburban Railway, whose main tracks were later used by the Hodiamont line. After the transit line consolidation in 1899, all lines, except the Suburban, became part of the city-wide United Railways Company system. The Suburban was absorbed in 1907. The principal reason for streetcar development in the West End was the World's Fair of 1904. All lines were extended to reach various entrances to the grounds. After the Fair, the University car line was built west from DeBaliviere parallel to the Rock Island railway to a terminus at what was then called Pennsylvania Avenue, now Big Bend.

A unique feature of the University line was a large wood and steel trestle which carried its double tracks over the Wabash Railroad, which then ran at grade. The ascent for this trestle began at DeBaliviere Avenue and resumed its grade level at Laurel Street, west of which the line operated on a private right-ofway. After the depression of the Wabash Railroad the streetcar operated over a much lower bridge. Among other lines in the vicinity was the Hamilton or City Limits line which ran from Wellston over Hamilton to Delmar and west to Skinker where it terminated near Lindell at a junction with the old Clayton line which ran out Wydown. After World War I, the City Limits line was extended south to Maplewood. On the south side of Forest Park was the car line of that name, originally called the Market Street line, which ran on a private right-of-way along Oakland Avenue. It served the amusement parks at Forest Park Highlands and West End Heights.

In the days before automobiles a treat for city dwellers was a ride on a trolley car for a day of fun at outlying amusement parks such as those mentioned or at Delmar or Suburban Gardens, Meramec Highlands and Creve Coeur Lake. First bus service from the West End to downtown was an unsuccessful one bus operation in 1914. Another failing attempt was the Missouri Motorbus Co. in 1921. Successful bus service was finally established by the Peoples Motorbus Company in 1923.


Image - Municipal autobus in Forest Park in 1917