The SFMTA hopes to have a cashless fare system for cable cars by 2019. (Daniel Kim/Special to S.F. Examiner)

The SFMTA hopes to have a cashless fare system for cable cars by 2019. (Daniel Kim/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Muni may slash California Cable Car late night service used by local workers

The California Cable Car line may soon see its hours slashed, which has drawn the opposition of cable car operators and politicians alike who say local late-night workers would be stranded, the San Francisco Examiner has learned.

The line ends its run at 1 a.m., but the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency may soon cut the end of the run to 11:45 p.m. Each day, the line runs cable cars from the Financial District, up and over Nob Hill, to Van Ness Avenue and California Street.

Supervisor Aaron Peskin, whose Chinatown and North Beach constituents use the nearby line, is against the move to slash hours.

“This is a mode of transportation recognized around the world, beloved by tourists, but is the backbone of local transportation in the north east corner of San Francisco,” Peskin told the Examiner.

He called the move to slash the iconic cable car line’s hours “bizarre.”

The SFMTA said the ridership numbers show fewer riders in the late hours of the night in justifying the cuts.

But Muni operators have long known the California Cable Car line serves a healthy dose of locals, as opposed to other cable car lines, like Powell, which mainly attracts tourists.

Rafael Cabrera has operated Muni vehicles for 38 years, but for the last six he’s been a cable car conductor. Cabrera acknowledged there are fewer riders late at night, but said those riders especially depend on cable cars to get home.

“Usually, it’s the people who got off of work at the Hyatt Regency, and the other hotels around the area,” including janitors, he said. “Folks working as dishwashers and cooks, they don’t have the means to call Uber or take a taxi.”

Because the reduction of the California Cable Car line may leave those more impoverished workers stranded, Cabrera said, “as far as I’m concerned, that’s not right.”Transit

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Outdoor dining, as seen here at Mama’s on Washington Square in North Beach in September, is expected to resume in San Franisco this week. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SF to reopen outdoor dining, personal services

San Francisco will allow outdoor dining and other limited business activity to… Continue reading

Patients line up in their cars to receive a shot at The City’s first mass COVID-19 vaccination site at City College of San Francisco on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Legislation would require SF to create a public COVID-19 vaccine plan — fast

San Francisco’s Department of Public Health would have to come up with… Continue reading

Ian Jameson (center) organized a group of tenant rights activists and assembled at the El Monte City Hall to demand that the City Council there pass an eviction moratorium barring all evictions during the coronavirus pandemic on Sunday, March 29, 2020. (Jason Armond / Los Angeles Times)
California would extend eviction protections to June 30 under proposal

Legislation released Monday would also subsidize rent for low-income tenants

A statue of Florence Nightingale outside the Laguna Honda Hospital is one of only two statues of women in The City. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
S.F. still falling short of goal to represent women in public art

City has few streets or public facilities not named after men

Comedian and actor Bob Odenkirk is among the dozens of performers in Festpocalypse, streaming this weekend to benefit SF Sketchfest. (Courtesy photo)
Bob Odenkirk joins star-studded Festpocalypse gang

Virtual comedy benefit replaces SF Sketchfest this year

Most Read