Couple hopes to start golf cart taxi service in downtown Winston-Salem

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- Golf carts as a shuttle service are closer to becoming reality in downtown.

Ried and Kirsten Hinsley came up with the idea that won them two $5,000 city grants to help get it started. The city is currently working to put the final touches on an ordinance allowing only "golf carts for hire" on downtown streets. The golf carts will have to meet all state license and rules as a vehicle and can only be used in downtown areas.

“It's something that downtown doesn't have and it's unique to the area," said Ried. "Studies have shown that people won't walk more than two blocks from where they park their cars and this will help more people see more of downtown."

The couple says they plan to provide shuttles to and from popular spots like The Arts District, Fourth Street and Burke Street.

"Older people or people with kids who can't walk from one end to the next can ride through and get to their cars easier," said Kirsten. "It's a safer way to get through downtown. A girl by herself doesn't have to worry being by herself getting back to her car when she has somebody with her."

The best part is the couple does not plan to charge for the service. The couple will sell advertising on the carts to cover cost. They hope to have the service up and running by Jan. 1.

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