Celebrating 150 Years of Cable Cars

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Tuesday, June 13, 2023

Cable Car Parade for 100th Anniversary of Powell Street Cable Cars Looking Down Powell Street Towards Sutter Street | March 28, 1988

Powell Street Cable Cars Looking Down Powell Street Towards Sutter Street

San Francisco’s iconic cable cars are turning 150 this year, and we’re throwing a party to celebrate! Today the SFMTA is kicking off a series of events that mark this sesquicentennial by offering residents and visitors a chance to learn more about the rich heritage and cultural significance of the cable car. The six-month celebration will take a journey through time and help people rediscover the allure of these cherished, moving city landmarks.

Since their invention, cable cars have woven their way into the fabric of San Francisco, becoming a beloved symbol of the city. As part of the 150th anniversary celebration, unique "ghost" cable cars from vanished lines will make a remarkable return. Discover the craftsmanship behind these engineering marvels with the first-ever public tours of the Muni shop (video) where cable cars are built and maintained.

Beginning July 1 through the end of 2023, we are offering a special $5 California cable car line unlimited day pass that will allow you to hop on and off all day. Take advantage of the all-day, all-Muni pass for only $13. This pass gets you unlimited rides on cable cars, F-line historic streetcars, Muni Metro lines and buses. It allows you to embark on captivating walking tours through the neighborhoods along the cable car lines. 

"This civic celebration of 150 years of cable cars is a fun opportunity for San Franciscans and visitors alike to 'ride backward' while looking forward," said Rick Laubscher, president of the Market Street Railway

You’ll be able to immerse yourself in the captivating stories of Chinatown, the Barbary Coast, Fisherman's Wharf, Nob Hill, Russian Hill, Union Square, Polk Gulch and the Financial District. Discover the intriguing histories of these neighborhoods while visiting vibrant shops and delectable restaurants. The experience is a perfect blend of past and present, and you can get there on a cable car!

You’ll want to join the festivities and rediscover the enchantment of San Francisco as the cable cars turn 150. From the inaugural ride on "Big 19" to the captivating walking tours and special passes, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

Learn more at our cable car anniversary webpage (SFMTA.com/cablecars150)