Big Red Cars — Beyond Disney

The anticipation is building for the unveiling of the upgraded Disney’s California Adventure theme park in Anaheim on June 15 (three months late). We talked about the replicas of the legendary Pacific Electric Big Red Cars that will run down the main drag of the park.
Now that it looks like the opening is actually happening, here’s the second part of that story we promised. If you’re headed to Southern California, whether visiting Disney or not, consider taking the time to a enjoy a more realistic “Big Red Car” experience in a couple of places.


Restored Pacific Electric car No. 1058 passes replica No. 501 on the Port of Los Angeles Waterfront Red Car Line. Rick Laubscher photo.

The Port of Los Angeles Waterfront Red Car Line is a 1.5 mile long route along a stretch of real Pacific Electric right-of-way. It opened in July 2003, linking various attractions with two beautifully made full sized replica cars based on the 500-class Pacific Electric cars of 1909. They’re joined by a real Pacific Electric car, No. 1058, built in 1907 and restored for charter and special service.
The San Pedro operation won’t be running on the day the Disney ride opens. It’s currently closed, reopening on June 29 on its regular schedule of Noon to 9:30 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. However, it’s jusssst a bit cheaper than admission to Disney parks. Only $1 for an all day pass.
To the east, in the Riverside County town of Perris, you’ll find numerous “Big Red Cars” at the Orange Empire Railway Museum. This video provides a nice taste:

Of course, you can also join us in paying tribute to Pacific Electric without leaving San Francisco, just by riding the F-line’s car No. 1061!


Comments: 2

  1. To bad San Francisco could not acquire a Pacific Electric “Hollywood” Car because it is just to big, it would be nice to have one go up and down the Embarcadero!

  2. I wish most of the Pacific Electric “Tens” were still around. It is sad that these beautiful clerestory car were scrapped decades ago.

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