This car commemorates Philadelphia Suburban Transportation Co. (PST)–the ‘Red Arrow’ lines serving Philly’s western suburbs–which ran interurban cars with some PCC features from 1949 to 1982.
PST’s city cousin was named Philadelphia Rapid Transit (PRT) (represented by PCCs 1055 and 1060), but actually PST was far more ‘rapid’, running on suburban rights-of-way far from city streets.
In 1941, PST modernized its fleet with ten ‘Brilliners’, a PCC competitor from old-line trolley builder J.G. Brill & Co. But the PST order turned out to be the last cars Brill ever built.
Needing more cars after the war, PST turned to St. Louis Car Co., which offered a body shell nearly identical to one bought by Muni (including car No. 1007) and Illinois Terminal Railroad. The Red Arrow cars, though, had rear doors only half as wide as the standard double-end body.
The 14 Red Arrow cars, delivered to PST in 1949, were equipped with non-PCC trucks (wheel and axle assemblies), along with motors and brakes designed for fast open-track running. These cars were capable of reaching 70 mph.
Initially, these PCC-lookalikes ran on the 19-mile West Chester line, but later served the Sharon Hill and Media lines. The private PST was taken over by the public SEPTA agency in 1970, and by 1982 the PCCs and Brilliners were supplanted by Kawasaki light rail vehicles.
Underneath the “Red Arrow” livery, Car 1007 itself has actually been a San Francisco Muni streetcar all its life. It ran from 1948 until 1982 on Muni’s J, K, L, M, and N lines, and was then retired and, in part because of our nonprofit’s advocacy, was stored rather than scrapped.
After we led the successful campaign for a permanent F-Market streetcar line, we advocated for the restoration of the stored double-end Muni PCCs because of their high capacity and operating flexibility. Car 1007 was one of three such double-enders to be restored as part of the original 1995 F-line fleet (along with 1010 and 1015) restored as part of the original 1995 F-line fleet.
When first restored, a Muni manager insisted that rather than a paint scheme paying tribute to another city that operated a similar streetcar, Car 1007 be painted to match the then-new silver and red Breda LRVs. This livery proved very unpopular and was replaced in 1997 by a tribute livery to the “Red Arrow Lines”.
Muni’s 1997 repaint of Car 1007 represented a later, simpler version of the gorgeous original “as-delivered” Red Arrow livery. For the car’s 2020 renovation by Brookville Equipment Company of Pennsylvania, Market Street Railway reached out to the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum, which owns beautifully restored Red Arrow Car 14.
MSR Member Jack Demnyan, active in the Pennsylvania museum, served as a great liaison. Muni’s project manager Joseph Flores and PCC maintenance supervisor Kevin Sheridan were meticulous in working with Brookville’s team to get the details as close as possible to the original Red Arrow cars. After delays tied to the Covid pandemic and supply chain issues, restored Car 1007 reentered Muni service on March 27, 2023.
San Francisco Municipal Railway, San Francisco CA, 1948
St. Louis Car Co.
2020, Brookville Equipment Co.
4 General Electric 1220E1
St. Louis B-3