Angels Flight Is On The Go Again
By Harriet Steinberg
Feb 11, 2007 - 6:19:00 PM
LOS ANGELES—Angels Flight, which closed in 2001 due to a fatal crash, will re-open again this summer. This rail line was not only a tourist attraction, but it also was valued as a method of transporting the downtown residents.
During the six years that this flight had been closed, there has been a great deal of transformation taking place around this area. Luxury high-rise condos have sprung up, which attracted thousands of people to the new residential area.
With the opening of the new Angels Flight, which is located near Grand Ave., there is speculation that it will be a valued form of transportation.
“Angels Flight was an interesting part of downtown,” said John Welborne, president of Angels Flight Railing Foundation .
Before the 1960s, this funicular was designed to transport the original residents on Bunker Hill to the downtown area.
This railway, as it did previously, will play an important role, connecting the historic downtown area along Broadway, Spring, and Hill Streets with the newer office towers, condos, and cultural centers on Bunker Hill.
Since Angels Flight closed, many of the residents have to hike up several hilly streets to get where they want to go. For obvious reasons, many people will welcome the rebirth of this flight.
One member of the Angels Flight Railing Foundation board said that he remembers riding the funicular as a young child when he visited the downtown area with his mother. At that time, many kids thought this was a fun ride. When this flight is completed, the ride will be important for people to get to their place of work.
The workers plan to install new safety devices. This includes track brakes. Officials are also planning a second cable or cable brake to prevent the kind of accident that occurred in 2001. That accident caused the death of an 83-year-old man and injured seven passengers.
The entire system must be certified by the state Public Utilities Commission before it can be re-opened.
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