Trolley rides again on pub door

(Gazette Photo by John Ruch) The streetcar painting on the Galway House door.

CENTRAL JP—The Arborway Line streetcar is running on Centre Street for the first time in 27 years—in the form of a painting, complete with a working headlight, on the door of the Galway House restaurant and bar.

The oil painting of a streetcar coming straight at the viewer replaces the formerly plain green front door of the 710 Centre St. pub. It was created about six months ago by Jamaica Plain artist Chris Plunkett.

The Green Line streetcar or “trolley” used to run on S. Huntington Avenue and Centre and South streets between Heath Street and Forest Hills until the MBTA “temporarily” halted service in 1985. Efforts to bring it back divided local opinion for years until the state effectively killed the plan several years ago.

The door painting is an “homage to the ‘old JP’ when that rattler roamed Centre Street and brings back memories for the older residents,” said Galway House owner Ed Lanzillo. “Many are the times I would get caught behind one of them and curse, mildly of course, the length of Centre Street. Now when you’re behind this one, we can ease your cares with a hot meal and cold beverage.”

Lanzillo joked that the Galway might come up with a way to commemorate JP’s current transit-related neighborhood war.

“Next idea is to come up with something to ease the effects on JP when they tear down the Casey Overpass,” he said. “That one may have to include 151 rum.”

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