California Street cable car line maintenance to begin

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency and Department of Public Works will begin maintenance work on the California Street cable car line on Thursday.

Major upgrades and infrastructure improvements will be taking place over the next nine months, including shutting the line down from January to June 2011, according to the Transbay Blog.

The work on the line is the first since a major overhaul was completed in 1984, according to ProgressiveRailroading.com.

Phase one will consist of sewer line upgrades and replacements and installing new curb ramps to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Phase two will then see the line shut down from January to June 2011 as tracks, switches and electrical components are replaced. The streets will also be repaved, and alarm sensors and communications lines will be installed. During the closure, diesel buses will serve those who regularly take the cable cars along the 1.5 mile track between Drumm Street and Van Ness Avenue.

The California Street line is the first of the three lines up for necessary repairs. Following the completion of the job, work will begin on the two Powell Street lines, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. Muni officials said the work on those lines has yet to be scheduled. The California Street line was chosen to be first because of its light ridership and that there are parallel lines of transit that can service those displaced riders.

The project is set to cost $24 million.