Duquesne Incline

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Duquesne Incline
Locale Pittsburgh, PA
Dates of operation 1877 – present
Track gauge ft 8½ in (1435 mm) (standard gauge)
Headquarters Pittsburgh, PA

Coordinates: 40.4391° N 80.0182° W The Duquesne Incline is a funicular, or inclined plane, located near Pittsburgh's South Side neighborhood and scaling Mt. Washington. It was completed in 1877 and is 800 feet long, 400 feet in height, and is inclined at a 30 degree angle.


The original purpose of the Duquesne Incline was the carriage of cargo up and down Mt. Washington in the late 1800s. It later carried passengers, particularly Mt. Washington residents who tired of walking up footpaths to the top. Inclines were then being built all over Mt. Washington. But as more roads were built on “Coal Hill” most of the other inclines were closed. In the 1940s, only the Monongahela Incline and the Duquesne Incline remained.

In 1962 the incline was closed, apparently for good. Major repairs were needed, and with so few patrons, the incline's private owners did little. But local Duquesne Heights' residents launched a fund-raiser to help the incline. It was a huge success, and on July 1, 1963 the incline reopened under the auspices of a non-profit organization dedicated to its preservation.

The incline has since been totally refurbished. The cars, built by the J.G. Brill Company of Philadelphia, have been stripped of paint to reveal the original wood. An observation deck was added at the top affording a magnificent view of Pittsburgh's "Golden Triangle", and the Duquesne Incline is now one of the city's most popular tourist attractions.

Mount Washington's famous view of downtown Pittsburgh

See also

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