Trains in our Neighborhood
The trains were all gone and the right-of-ways sold off by 1960, but
many residents collect old pictures and talk about the bits and pieces
left in their yards. We even have several residents who remember riding
the trains as children. The train above was an excursion run by the Bay
Area Electric Railway Association, shortly before the tracks were removed.
Key Route System
- Bay Area Rail Fan
- Photographs of the Key Route System from the early 1900's through 1960 along
with some recent photos of the area where the tains ran.
- AC Transit History
- The Key Route System morphed into AC Transit after the trains were decommissioned
and busses took over public transportation.
- Holman Combine 1005
- The long history of one railcar from 1912 on the Key Route System to it's present state
of ongoing restoration.
- GM's Destruction of California Transit Systems
- From the 1930's through the late 1950's General Motors bought up most California
rail systems and decomissioned them in favor of bus systems.
- Key System Photos
- More photographs of the trains and neighborhoods along with then-and-now photographs
of several former train stops.
Warning: large page
- American Memory Video Footage
- From the Library of Congress' American Memory web site. A three minute silent film from June,
1906 of a Key Route train driving through Berkeley. Be sure to read the great scene descriptions
below the video. They also have lots of other great photos and video.
- Transportation and Land Use Coalition
- Proposals for revising transportation goals in Alameda county. Reviving the
ideas behind the Key Route System feature prominently in the plans.
- Chronology of California History
- A simple annotated timeline from 1869 through 1906.
- Key System on Bay Bridge
- Just one photo, but an interesting view of a Key Route train traveling across the
lower deck of the Bay Bridge. Getting to work for me would have been a breeze considering
the train stopped two houses away from mine.
- Berkeley Observed
- An essay on how public transportation spurred growth in the area from 1873 through 1946.