DALLAS (KDAF) — When thinking about American cities with trolleys and street cars, it’s often San Francisco that comes to mind. Texans should immediately think of Dallas.

The folks behind The McKinney Avenue trolleys, McKinney Avenue Transit Authority (MATA), call them the best-kept secret in the Metroplex. As of July, MATA has been operating in Uptown Dallas for 33 years.

“We have people in Plano who come down here and say, ‘I never knew we had a trolley in Dallas,'” John Landrum, VP of Operations, Systems and Technology, said.

John Landrum, MATA Vice President of Operations, Systems and Technology, is the son of Ed Landrum – co-founder of MATA with Phil Cobb.

A little over 33 years ago, Phil Cobb was the neighborhood president for the area now known as Uptown. One of his first orders of business was uncovering some hidden history.

“In the process of [uncovering historic brick], we found these things called trolley tracks that were largely intact,” Cobb said. “I was hooked on the idea of bringing back historic streetcar service back to Dallas.”

Since then, they’ve grown their fleet from four to seven and over doubled their trackage.

“We’ve grown with the neighborhood,” Cobb said.

And the Uptown community has supported their growth.

“We have regular commuters who ride us everyday,” Landrum said. “They know the operator, schedule and cars.”

Each of their still-active cars has a unique origin story. Learn all about them in the story above!

The McKinney Avenue Transit Authority is supported through private and public support. If you would like to donate to keep the trolley alive, click here!