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Angels Flight Tells MTA: Thanks, but Stay Away

By Eric Richardson
Published: Thursday, February 08, 2007, at 10:52AM
Angels Flight Eric Richardson [Flickr]

When Angels Flight announced a few weeks ago that it would be reopening this summer, I speculated that the press they got might at least partially be designed to prevent an MTA takeover. The privately owned railway has taken a long time in raising the funding it needs to reopen, and City officials had asked the MTA to study what it might take for the public to do the rehab and reopening.

A week ago Angels Flight Chairman Dennis Luna sent a letter (PDF) to MTA head Roger Snoble and City Transportation committee chair Wendy Gruel. The text points to the recent media coverage and says that things are fine, and asks if they wouldn't mind just backing off.

On behalf of our Board, I am writing now to say that we appreciate the time and good will involved in your examining ways that Metro or the City could be helpful to the private Angels Flight Railway Foundation that owns the Railway. However, as reported in the Times, Angels Flight now is engaged in its third, and final, phase of Restoration.

... There are many and varied needs that the MTA is called upon to address. Our Board does not think it is necessary for county or city taxpayers to be asked to pay for capital expenses of the private Angels Flight Railway.

For Downtown's sake I do hope that the railway is indeed reopened this summer. Until I see cars on the track, though, I'm still going to have to take a wait and see approach to all this.

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