Metro light rail car 144 will make its last run on July 25 before retirement. Afterwards, it will be trucked to its new home at the Orange Empire Railway Museum in Perris.
Car 144 was one of 54 identical “P865” type cars to open service on the Los Angeles-to- Long Beach Blue Line on July 14, 1990 — a date that marks the return of rail to Los Angeles County after a 27-year absence.
Since then, 144 has been a regular fixture of the Blue and Expo lines for 28 years and logged more than 1.8 million miles of service. The last of the P865 class will be retired from service in August of this year, while 15 identical “P2020” class cars will continue to run for an additional five to six years.
Upon arrival at the Orange Empire Railway Museum, 144 will be preserved and operated for visitors on the museum’s demonstration railway. It will be in good company, taking its place among dozens of preserved historic Los Angeles trolleys and interurban trains which have been delighting visitors at the museum since it was founded in 1958. The museum is the only place in the world where you can actually take a ride in a restored “Red Car” or “Yellow Car” from Los Angeles’ transit past.
Kinkisharyo, the company manufacturing Metro’s newest fleet of rail cars, has volunteered to donate the cost of transporting car 144 from Los Angeles to the museum. Mr. Akiyoshi Oba, President of Kinkisharyo International, L.L.C., said “Kinkisharyo is proud to provide Metro and the citizens of Los Angeles with rail vehicles for the present and future. Being a part of the L.A. rail legacy, we are delighted to partner with Metro to help preserve rail history at the Orange Empire Railway Museum.”
So if you’re a fan of the old P865s and are a little bummed about their retirement, never fear! You’ll soon be able to visit car 144 at the Orange Empire Railway Museum.
Categories: Transportation News