Above is a testament to Los Angeles’ Pacific Electric Red Cars, taken out of service in 1961. The cars once crisscrossed four counties on more than 1,000 miles of track, but now only exist in memories and photographs.
Photos: Art Rogers, Grant MacDonald, Ray Graham, R.L. Oliver / Los Angeles Times
In this Nov. 20, 2012 photo, Alex Rodriguez’ public art project titled “Whirling Wheels,” is seen against the midtown skyline along the Atlanta BeltLine in Atlanta.
Since an Atlanta nonprofit opened a 2.25-mile-long paved trail east of downtown last month, it has attracted a steady stream of joggers, dog-walkers and cyclists to take in spectacular views of the skyline as well as a slice of established neighborhoods that were once only seen by riding a freight train.
The Eastside Trail is the latest and most visible phase of the Atlanta BeltLine, an ambitious $2.8 billion plan to transform a 22-mile railroad corridor that encircles Atlanta into a network of parks, trails, public art, affordable homes and ultimately streetcars. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
The demise of the Key System in the ’40s and ’50s was two-fold. The popularity of owning a car skyrocketed, but most importantly General Motors began purchasing electric train systems across America and shutting them down. This happened in over 50 cities and ultimately the Supreme Court found General Motors guilty of conspiracy. Sadly for the Bay Area, the damage was already done. The Key System within the East Bay was dismantled and replaced with AC Transit buses in 1948, and train service across the Bay Bridge ended in 1958.
Reporting live from the streets of Portland, Oregon, where I’ve just noticed a new map on the ticket machine at my downtown stop. These are being rolled out in preparation for the abolition of the Free Rail Zone (and ALL fare zones!) on September 1st, and I have to say that the removal of the old multi-colored zone rings is a great improvement.
The poor old streetcar still gets short shrift (now being a grey squiggle instead of its previous brown squiggle), even with the imminent opening of the Eastside loop.
what?! no more free rail zone aka Fareless Square :[