August 31: This Date in Los Angeles Transportation History

1936:  The last link in major highway improvements to the Grapevine Canyon Grade project through the Tehachapi Mountains north of Los Angeles is open to traffic.

The Lebec-Fort Tejon unit of the project is the final section of the project through the Tehachapi Mountains linking Los Angeles to Bakersfield.

119 sharp turns in the old narrow road were reconfigured into three traffic lanes with only 23 “easy curves.”

Numerous gas, oil and power transmission lines on private rights of way in the narrow canyon further complicated the project.

More information can be found in the October, 1936 issue of California Highways and Public Works.


2017:  Angels Flight reopens for the first time since 2013 after upgrades and safety improvements.

The work performed includes:

  • installation of a maintenance/evacuation stairway
  • installation of new end gates on both cars
  • restoration/finishing of cars and both upper and lower stations
  • repairs to vehicle operating system
  • repairs to safety and security cameras, detection systems, and other electronic components
  • testing, clearing, repairing, and/or replacing key safety elements such as drive cables, service rope carrier brake, and other railway components

More information can be found in the September 1, 2017 issue of the Every Voice Counts CEO weekly brief.