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Checking In: Downtown's Angels Flight

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After getting you up to speed on the renovations at Angels Knoll Plaza, just a bit of new information on the reopening of Angels Flight, the Downtown funicular that previously connected Bunker Hill to the Historic Core. John Welborne, president of Angels Flight Railway, tells Curbed that, "As of the end of May 2008, most of the off-site design and construction work for restoring the 107-year-old funicular will be nearly complete. We expect the contractors to return the two historic railway cars, Olivet and Sinai, to the tracks soon."

Well, it's all sort of vague on the soon part. But Welborne writes: "That will allow testing of the cars and the new Drive System to be witnessed by both consulting funicular engineers and by representatives from the California Public Utilities Commission, which must approve safety certification of the Railway before it can reopen for public service."

"Just completed--during the third week of May--was some other restoration detail work, such as the installation of all-new Station House loading platform gates and the painting of the orange and black railings adjoining the Station House."

"Angels Flight is being restored with a traditional (like its original) funicular cable system. The new Drive has been manufactured and installed. A computer rendering is attached." (See gallery)

Welborne stresses patience, pointing out that the lawsuit over the 2001 Angels Flight accident that killed one person just wrapped up in September 2006. Thankfully, the completed new Drive system has a second safety cable attached to each car.

And in his email to Curbed, Welborne closes with the following plea: "...we, once again, solicit your readers' assistance in helping provide the final 3% of the funding needed." Like a lot of projects, this one needs help.

· Angels Flight [Official Site that hasn't been updated in two years]