San Francisco cable cars are shut down for repairs for 10 days

San Francisco Cable Cars
A pair of cable cars pass on Powell Street in San Francisco. The cable cars will stop running for 10 days starting Friday for repairs.
(Eric Risberg / Associated Press)

San Francisco’s iconic cable cars will be out of service for the next 10 days for repair work.

Shuttle buses will replace all cable car lines as the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency refurbishes gearboxes, which propel the cars up and down the city’s hills. Fifteen more shuttles will be added during the closure. The cable car lines are expected to reopen Sept. 22.

“This is a state-of-good-repair project,” said Erica Kato, deputy spokesperson for the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency. “We want to make sure everything is running safely and reliably.”


The city buses that will serve all cable car routes will not stop at the cable car terminals but at bus stops nearby. Regular bus fares of $3 ($2.50 for MuniMobile and Clipper users) will apply.

The cable cars, which run three lines — Powell-Hyde, Powell-Mason and California — are a National Historic Landmark. California has 147 such spots, including the Gamble House in Pasadena and the Bradbury Building in downtown Los Angeles.

In the interim, Kato recommends tourists looking to ride a vintage machine should catch the F-Market & Wharves Line historic streetcars that run from Fisherman’s Wharf to the Castro.

At the same time, SFMTA will collaborate with San Francisco Public Works department on sidewalk repairs and tree trimming.