Your streetcar ride begins at the Linden Hills station, which is very close to the pavillion on Lake Harriet. This Station is a reconstruction of the original, built for $300 in 1900, which served the residents of the Linden Hills neighborhood. For a time, there was a second station just to the north that was used for big post-concert crowds.
After buying tokens in the station, passengers board the streetcar on the platform through the front door.
After the last passenger boards, the conductor rings the bell three times and the streetcar backs across W. 42nd St. toward the carbarn, which is nestled under a bridge a few hundred yards to the south. The Twin City Lines was primarily double tracked - the site of the second track is very evident in this photo.
After reaching the carbarn at the south end of the line, the car accelerates north towards Lake Calhoun. That's Lake Harriet in the background.
New in 2000 is freshly-restored PCC
("President's Conference Committee") number 322. When
delivered between 1946 and 1949, these 140 streamlined
steel streetcars were the most modern kind of streetcar
to run in the Twin Cities.
Photo by John DeWitt
Between the station and the pedestrian underpass, a section of the double track has been restored as a passing track. The pedestrian underpass is the approximate site of the second station.
Most of the Twin City Lines trackage ran down city streets. But, the section between the lakes was private right-of-way and is heavily wooded. Streetcars ran as fast as 60 m.p.h. through the Glen.
This stone arch bridge, nearly as old as the right-of-way, carries William Berry Parkway over the track.
After leaving the woods, the line passes by the Park Board's archery range. At this point the track is a little west of the original right-of-way. Lakewood Cemetery expanded to the west across the original right-of-way after the streetcar line was abandoned in 1954.
Along the southeast shore of Lake Calhoun the track follows the edge of Lakewood Cemetery. The road in the foreground encircles the lake, part of the "Grand Round" of parkways that encircle Minneapolis.
The tracks end about two hundred yards short of W. 36th St. Originally, a bridge carried the line over 36th. It followed the hill on the east side of Lake Calhoun to W. 31st St., then traveled on city streets to downtown Minneapolis and St. Paul.
The Twin City Lines relied on loop tracks and wyes and did not generally build double-ended streetcars. Because there are no turning facilities on our line, the car makes the return trip in reverse.
Back at the station, passengers get off by the rear exit and another group boards by the front for their ride back in time.
All photos by Eric Hopp unless noted
Be sure to visit the Streetcar 1300 Virtual Tour.