Tomorrow, May 28, is the Mon Incline's 140th birthday. In honor of this occasion, here are some facts and a look back at the history of this iconic form of transit:
- The Mon Incline opened to the public on May 28, 1870 and is believed to be the oldest incline still operating in North America.
- The incline originally cost $50,000 to build.
- The nearby Duquesne Incline opened in 1877.
- Port Authority took over Mon Incline operations in 1964 and the incline was declared a historic structure by the Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation in 1970.
- The Mon Incline has undergone several renovations and modernizations over the years: the installation of a steel structure in 1882; renovated stations, new cars and track structure in 1982; and the introduction of a computerized operating system in 1994.
- While Port Authority buses and T see their biggest ridership numbers on weekdays, the Mon Incline is most popular on Saturdays, likely due to the number of people who use it for sightseeing. The incline carries about 2,200 riders each weekday, 3,500 on Saturdays and 1,900 on Sundays.
- The Mon Incline's track is 635 feet long and its elevation is 369.39 feet.
- The incline travels at a speed of six miles per hour and carries up to 23 riders in each of its two cars.