The Runaway Costs of San Francisco’s Treat: Cable Cars @ $5 a Ride

It’s a national historic landmark. It’s been in existence since 1873 when Andrew Hallidie built the first one. Its gripman lowers a piece a metal that grabs a cable that runs in a slot beneath the street at a constant 9.5 mph. And it’s $5 a ride.

When I was a kid, you could hop on a Cable Car for 25¢. Today, all other Municipal Railway transportation is only $1.50. But constant upgrades to the system, the rising cost of fuel for San Francisco’s Municipal Railway buses, skyrocketing electric power costs for the buses and trolleys, plus a cost of $312 an hour to run the 40 Cable Cars have pushed the price up to a fin for a one-way ride.

Now, “it’s turning riders off,” said Mayor Gavin Newsome, realizing that a family of five would pay $50 for a round-trip to Fisherman’s Wharf. Read the story at SF Gate.com.

Posted by Gil Zeimer on September 13, 2006 in Travel

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