Return to ERHA homepage

Pasadena & Los Angeles Electric Railway
Los Angeles & Pasadena Electric Railway

See also:Pasadena & Los Angeles Electric Railway

Pasadena & Los Angeles Electric Railway Rolling Stock

Electric Express & Storage Company

   The Great Merger brought the Pacific Electric Company to Pasadena. On September 3, 1911, the 'PE' obtained ownership of a general system of local and interurban rail passenger lines in the Crown City, which had been developed since 1886 by a number of predecessor companies. Chief among these predecessors were the old Pacific Electric and it's associated company, the Los Angeles Inter-urban Railway Company, henceforth LAIU. These companies traced their lineage back to the Los Angeles & Pasadena, the Pasadena & Mt. Lowe, the Pasadena & Los Angeles, plus a host of horse car companies such as the Pasadena Street Railroad, the Highland Railroad, the Colorado Street Railway, the City Railway of Pasadena, and the West Pasadena Railway.

To give a thumbnail sketch of street railway development in Pasadena:

  • 1886    The first horse car line opens; 3'-6" gauge. Pasadena Street Railroad.
  • 1893    The first electric line opens; 3'-6" gauge. City Railway Company.
  • 1894    The Pasadena & Los Angeles Electric Railway purchases all Pasadena street railway companies.
  • 1895    The P&LA opens the first interurban in Southern California:
  •             Pasadena to Los Angeles.
  •             The bulk of the horse car lines are rebuilt and electrified, 3'-6" gauge.
  •             Additional electric lines built.
  • 1898    The Los Angeles & Pasadena Electric Railway Company succeeds the P&LA. By this time the Pasadena city lines had grown to 32.17 equivalent single track miles.
  •             Last horse car line abandoned.
  • 1902    Old Pacific Electric succeeds the Los Angeles & Pasadena.
  • 1903    Old PE rebuilds practically all Pasadena electric railways, standard gauging (4'-8½" between the inside edges of the running rails) them, laying heavier rail and reconstructing trolley wire.
  • 1904    The Pasadena & Mt. Lowe Railway is absorbed, many new lines built. This was a period of intense activity and when completed, Pasadena had an exemplary completed, local and interurban rail network.
  • 1911    Old PE and LAIU jointly performed this work.
  • 1911    New PE succeeds Old PE and LAIU.
  • 1912    Southern Pacific Pasadena Station electrified for PE use; access trackage via Broadway electrified.
  •             Numerous extensions and new lines built, also three older line rebuilt.
  • 1923    PE motor coaches replace all but four local rail lines; as these four lines are through-routed, plus two rail lines remain of a strictly local character.
  • 1941    Remaining local rail lines abandoned; PE sells its city lines to Pasadena City Lines, Inc., a National City Lines property.
    Return to ERHA homepage