Riding the Seattle Monorail

Next year, the Seattle Monorail will be 50. Opened March 24, 1962 for the Seattle World Fair.  The line runs at a top speed of 72km/h for just over 1.5 kilometres.

The train pictured here is one of the two original Alweg trains built in 1961. The monorail trains and their tracks were given historical landmark status by the Seattle Landmarks Preservation Board April 16, 2003.

About 2.5 million people annually pay the $2 fare for the two minute trip. In the late 90s, there was  a plan to put five monorail lines across Seattle. Called the Seattle Monorail Project, it was finally buried in 2008.

By contrast, the Shangahi Maglev Train with a top operational speed of 431 km/h (268 mph),was built between 2001 and 2004. The train takes 7 minutes and 20 seconds to complete a distance of 30 km (18.6 mi)   to Pudong International Airport from a station on the Shanghai Metro. I can’t wait to ride that one in the future!

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