Angels Flight: LA’s historic tiny railway opens today

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Closed for nearly four years, Los Angeles’s favorite funicular—Angels Flight—is set to reopen to the public today.

The tiny railway will ferry passengers up and down Bunker Hill, just as it did more than 100 years ago. Back then, roundtrips cost a penny. Now, it’ll cost $1 for a one-way ride. (Riders with Metro TAP cards can get a reduced fare of 50 cents.)

Steven DeWitt, of ACS Infrastructure, the railway’s new operator, told the Downtown News that repairs to the tracks and cars, including the installation of a new emergency stairway and updates to the motors, cost almost $5 million.

Angels Flight has been closed since a derailment in September 2013, the most recent in a string of safety concerns over the previous years. A 2001 derailment that resulted in one passenger’s death shuttered the railway until 2010. Another safety issue in 2011 resulted in closure of the funicular yet again.

The 282-foot-long railway dates to 1901, and was originally located a half block north, near the Third Street tunnel. It opened at its present location, across from Grand Central Market, in 1996.

ACS worked with the nonprofit Angels Flight Railway Foundation and Sener, an engineering firm, to reopen the beloved Bunker Hill attraction. The group will continue working together as the Angels Flight Development Company to operate the railway; they have a 30-year contract with the city.

Angels Flight Railway

351 S Hill St, Los Angeles, CA 90013(213) 626-1901Visit Website

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