CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – A Lowcountry business owner has created an alternative option to traditional horse-drawn carriage rides in downtown Charleston.

Kyle Kelly unveiled on Monday the first prototype for an all-electric, horseless carriage.

Kelly said he began working on the e-carriage about four years ago in hopes it would offer tourists the option to take embark on a traditional tour ride through downtown Charleston, but with a modern, eco-friendly twist.

Residents have long voiced their concerns but there’s been little to no change. I saw an opportunity to come up with a solution. It’s not meant to stop or disrupt existing horse carriage businesses, but rather serve as a vehicle in the evolution of the industry. I want this to be something locals are proud to see on the streets.”

Kyle Kelly, founder of E-Carriage, LLC.

The creator said the design was created “with safety and comfort in mind while adhering to the aesthetics of a traditional horse-drawn carriage.” It can hold up to 18 guests, including a driver in the front, and is powered by 16 batteries with LED lights for visibility.

The use of horse-drawn carriages in downtown Charleston has become a contentious issue in recent years with animal advocates seeking alternatives and working with city leaders to address safety issues.

Kelly said Charleston will be the home base for this project but hopes to eventually roll out the program in nearby cities facing similar issues.