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The 'Transportainment' Industry Rolls on in Nashville

With new legislation restricting party vehicles, will the industry last?

By Emmy Burton
February 11 2022
Rolling down Broadway Street in Nashville a John Deere pulls groups of people from bar-to-bar. (The New York Times) 
 

Once upon a time, Nashville was a tiny beating heart in the middle of Tennessee's rolling hills. Good olé' home cooking and country music played from your front porch were country living staples.  

Now, the home of country music is bustling with traffic that Visit Music City claims had 16.2 million visitors from 2019-20; in today’s post-Covid environment, those numbers are on the rise city-wide, with increased participation at events, concerts, sporting events, and the daily draw making up for lost time. One of the biggest draws for tourists worldwide is Nashville's famous beloved “Honky Tonk” street, otherwise aptly, and more formally, known as Broadway 

Despite the growing industry due to demand, many residents have positioned for tighter regulations on transportainment vehicles in Nashville. (WPLN News) 

From long open-top buses to wagons pulled by tractors to the pubs on wheels, the on-the-go "transportainment" industry keeps the party going from bar-to-bar. A major draw for these parties on the go is bachelorette groups. As the second most popular U.S. destination for bachelorette parties (Vegas holds spot #1), girl groups flood to Nashville all year long, celebrating the single life one last time, navigating bars via party buses that have become too much of a good thing, creating a bumper-to-bumper gridlock on the once quaint streets.  

Here’s a look at what that experience looked like before Nashville’s Metro City Council passed an ordinance last fall regulating alcohol consumption on open-aired vehicles for the first time since the "transportainment" fad came to fame almost four years ago. 

And if you’ve ever been to Nashville during the CMA’s, you know these snapshots don’t begin to tell the story that this is a town that’s less fueled on petrol and more on music and moonshine (not that we’re saying that’s a bad thing…), which, economically, is the bread-and-butter of this town that has promptly ‘re-opened’ the tap with pending legislation to find a happy medium that satisfies not only the locals and tourists and but tax revenue essential to the city’s growing infrastructure.   

Stay tuned. 

Despite protests and local frustration, pedal pubs and party busses can be seen gridlocked near and around downtown Nashville. (Main Street Nashville) 

 

 

Nashville’s growing transportainment industry has opened doors for new businesses and entrepreneurs like “Hell on Wheels,” a business run by and supporting US Veterans. (Hell on Wheels) 

 

 

The Honky Tonk bus is open for business despite new legislation with new safety standards for party vehicles downtown. (The Tennessean) 

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