You could soon be the proud owner of your very own tram, thanks to the Andrews Government's new Retired Trams Strategy, revealed today.
The plan's designed to give the city's old vehicles a new lease on life, allowing Victorians to apply to acquire their own tram for free. Expressions of interest will open on Monday, May 28, and run until July 6. They're not just giving them away to anyone, though — if you're keen to add one of the historic vehicles to your collection, you'll have to explain how you'll plan to restore, repurpose and maintain it, so it's preserved for future generations. Priority will be given to applicants who plan to keep the vehicles accessible to the public and of benefit to the community.
The best part is that the trams will be completely free for Victorian community organisations, museums and not-for-profits. But those wanting to use the tram for commercial purposes (like accommodation or hospitality) will need to pay, as will interstate residents.
There are 134 W-Class trams (the old rattly green and yellow ones) up for grabs, following a recent careful examination of the state's 237-strong retired fleet. Currently, they're sitting in storage at the Newport Railway Workshop.
"Over the years, trams have transported millions of Victorians, connected our communities and are an integral part of our rich heritage," Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan explained. "If they're not going to be used on the network, we want to keep these trams accessible to the community."