This car is painted to honor Cleveland Transit System, which ran PCC streetcars from 1946 to 1953. Cleveland transit commissioner Peter Witt designed a popular pre-PCC streetcar that was adopted by many cities (including Milan, Italy, ten of whose ‘Peter Witts’ are now part of Muni’s historic fleet).
But after World War II, Cleveland Transit System (CTS) wanted more modern cars, procuring 75 PCCs, including 25 built for Louisville that never ran there (paint design shown on Muni No. 1062). The Cleveland paint scheme, reminiscent of the Browns football team that debuted the same year as the PCCs, was one of the more intricate to appear on a streetcar.
At the same time, though, CTS was issuing a series of transit master plans that evolved from a system that called for 450 PCCs to one that called for none at all: instead, a rapid transit line fed by trolley buses and motor coaches. By May 1953, CTS had sold and delivered all 75 of its PCCs to Toronto, leaving its remaining streetcar lines to be served by the old Peter Witts until they shut down the following year.
But that wasn’t the end of the PCC story in Cleveland. The local government of a suburb, Shaker Heights, had bought out a private transit operator during World War II. By 1948, they began operating PCCs on what was called the “Shaker Rapid” to downtown Cleveland, mostly along private right-of-way. Most of the Shaker Heights PCCs, both new and secondhand, were fitted with multiple unit controls and ran in trains of up to four cars. (Some of the Shaker Heights PCCs came from the same original Minneapolis-St. Paul group of cars that include Muni Nos. 1070-1080.)
The Shaker Heights PCCs were replaced in 1983 with light rail vehicles made by Breda of Italy, which also built Muni’s current light rail vehicle fleet used on the J, K, L, M, N, and T lines.
Originally built for
Twin City Rapid Transit Co., Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN, 1946 (as car No. 336)
Public Service Coordinated Transport, Newark, NJ, 1953 (as car No. 17)
Acquired by Muni from
New Jersey Transit, Newark, NJ, 2004
St. Louis Car Co.
Brookville Equipment Company, PA, 2004-2011
4 General Electric 1220