Trains and Rails at Del Mar’s Powerhouse Park.

Visitors to Del Mar’s beachside Powerhouse Park might easily miss this very interesting sign.

The sign is unobtrusive and badly weathered and stands across the walking path from the “Tot Lot” playground. When you lean in close to read the sign, you discover it concerns the nearby railroad tracks.

If you’re lucky, while you’re standing there, an Amtrak or Coaster train, or even a freight train, might rumble by.

I had to add contrast to these photographs, to make reading the sign a little easier.

Amtrak’s Pacific Surfliner roars by, heading out onto Del Mar’s coastal bluffs. (I took this photo as I walked south of the sign through Sea Cliff Park, which is immediately adjacent to Powerhouse Park.)

Trains and Rails. Ribbons of steel that link our country.

The origins of the San Diego Northern Railway date back to the late 1880s, when Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway (AT&SF) built tracks along the Pacific coast from Orange County to San Diego…

…Several different train operators use this railroad. The NCTD carries more than 1.1 million passengers on a total of nearly 5,000 Coaster commuter trains annually. Amtrak carries more than 1.5 million passengers on more than 8,000 Surfliner trains annually. The Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway also runs approximately 2,500 freight trains along this coastal railroad every year…

The sign contains fun facts concerning local train history, including:

On July 7, 1881, the first ship arrived in San Diego with iron rails from Europe.

On November 17, 1885, the last spike was driven in San Bernardino connecting San Diego to the national line.

The last steam train left San Diego for Los Angeles on August 23, 1953.

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Frank Sinatra filmed on a San Diego museum ship!

Did you know Frank Sinatra filmed a scene aboard the Maritime Museum of San Diego’s historic steam ferryboat Berkeley?

I had no idea until my visit to the museum today!

During the opening of the 1957 film Pal Joey, starring Rita Hayworth, Frank Sinatra and Kim Novak, the legendary crooner watches a pair of lady’s legs descend steps aboard what was then a San Francisco ferryboat.

If you watch this YouTube beginning at 2:53, you can see the historic ferry departing Oakland Pier to cross San Francisco Bay. You can then recognize several features of the ferryboat Berkeley as Sinatra does his thing.

Here’s a great website with photographs from the movie and the corresponding locales. You can see a train that pulled up to the Oakland Pier, where passengers would transfer their luggage onto the Berkeley.

What a cool, little-known bit of history!

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post fresh blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

It’s easy to explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on this website’s sidebar. Or click a tag. There’s a lot of stuff to share and enjoy!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Looking to the future at SANDAG Community Fair!

What will the San Diego region look like in the future?

Glimpses were provided today of future possibilities during a free family event at Ruocco Park. The SANDAG (The San Diego Association of Governments) Community Fair brought together a variety of public and private entities who are advocating and working for change–primarily when it comes to mass transit.

The projects previewed include a future Central Mobility Hub, which will connect regional transit to San Diego International Airport; a solution to relocate train tracks that run near eroding bluffs in Del Mar; and the upcoming Otay Mesa East Port of Entry. I also saw intriguing plans for a trolley station in Tijuana, Mexico.

Other SANDAG initiatives include advancing digital equity in neighborhoods, the Youth Opportunity Pass Pilot Program of MTS, and the creation of affordable housing.

I saw lots of charts, maps, infographics and smiles. I asked some questions and learned a few things.

I also walked by the kid activity stations, picked up a new bike map, learned about the trails of San Elijo Lagoon, and learned about butterflies, birds and replenishing beach sand.

Then I got some free popcorn and flavored ice, and watched Hanna paint a cool mural, which would eventually depict a scene of San Diego’s beautiful environment.

The SANDAG Community Fair was a great way for the public to interact with those making plans to shape our shared future. Public input, including concerns, were welcome.

And it all was fun, too!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

New beauty inside historic Santa Fe Depot.

I believe that efforts to revive the life and beauty of historically important buildings should be celebrated. So today let me celebrate a project underway inside San Diego’s historic 1915 Santa Fe Depot.

Earlier this week, as I was waiting for Jimmy at the Santa Fe Depot concession stand to microwave a burrito, I noticed some yellow tape. The enormous Waiting Room’s wooden benches were being sanded down and newly varnished!

When I walked through the depot this morning, the work had progressed. More of the benches were richly shining! Jimmy had informed me it took about one day to complete each bench.

The interior of an amazing space in downtown San Diego is becoming even more beautiful.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

The Vintage Trolley: A Labor of Love.

Last weekend I rode the San Diego Trolley’s old PCC streetcar 530. I traveled a few stops on the Vintage Trolley’s downtown Silver Line loop.

As I looked about the interior of the restored 1940’s streetcar, I noticed a sign that I’d never seen before. Several paragraphs pay tribute to Ed Lindstrom, who was instrumental in restoring the Vintage Trolley vehicles operated by MTS.

Ed worked as a Light Rail Vehicle Project Coordinator and Electromechanic. Restoring the two streetcars that now run on the Silver Line–cars 529 and 530–required parts that are extremely difficult to find. According to the sign, Ed relentlessly sought the necessary parts from other transit agencies, collectors and museums. With some harder-to-find components, Ed got creative. He reverse-engineered and produced them specifically for the project!

To learn more about the PCC streetcar restoration, and see photos of how the old cars once looked, click here!

If you ever ride one of these nostalgic streetcars on a weekend, you can thank Ed and many others who’ve worked countless hours making a beautiful dream come true.

A LABOR OF LOVE.

Operation of the vintage streetcars in San Diego…began as a dream of Harry Mathis… A cadre of volunteers, led by our restoration manager, Dave Slater, has contributed more than 11,000 man hours of work on our fleet of PCC’s…

As a resident of downtown San Diego who loves riding the Vintage Trolley cars, thank you!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Riding with evil: Doom Breaker and Moriarty!

Are you ready to face overwhelming evil? Have you the courage to ride with terrifying monsters or a brilliant criminal mastermind?

During 2022 Comic-Con, you might need all of your strength and wits should you jump aboard the Doom Breaker bus from WEBTOON, or the Moriarty: The Devil’s Game trolley from Audible!

I spotted both of these vehicle wraps today while walking around downtown.

The Doom Breaker bus appears to be for charter; the awesome Moriarty wrap on the San Diego Trolley is the latest of many cool trolley wrap designs this year!

If you’d like to view my coverage of Comic-Con so far, which includes hundreds of cool photographs, click here!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

More Comic-Con trolleys and buses appear!

More and more trolleys and buses are appearing around San Diego that are wrapped for 2022 Comic-Con.

Check it out!

This morning I spotted two new Amazon Prime Video trolley wraps that state Elves Welcome and All Fankind Welcome.

Two new MTS bus wraps promote Crunchyroll’s SPY x FAMILY and Attack on Titan!

If you’d like to view my coverage of Comic-Con so far, which includes hundreds of cool photographs, click here!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Crunchyroll anime buses appear for Comic-Con!

Public transit buses in San Diego are being wrapped for 2022 Comic-Con. I spotted a cool one this morning!

The MTS buses promote Crunchyroll, a distributor, publisher or producer of many anime and manga titles, including Dragon Ball Super and My Hero Academia.

The character on the above bus is Crunchyroll-Hime, mascot of Crunchyroll.

I suspect there might be different designs to come, so I’ll provide updates should I spot any!

It’s feeling like Comic-Con in 2022 is going to be bigger and crazier than ever. Earlier this week I spotted the third Comic-Con trolley wrap. More and more cool stuff is appearing every day, with now only three weeks to go!

UPDATE!

Next day, look what I saw! It appears that city bus route 992 to the Airport is receiving the wraps. Which makes sense!

This one promotes Dragon Ball Super SUPER HERO. Check out the graphics. I had to increase the contrast on the second photo somewhat…

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Will this be your futuristic “wearable” car in 2050?

A futuristic car–a new form of wearable machine–is presently on display at the San Diego Automotive Museum in Balboa Park.

The Nissan GT-R 2050 is a full-size prototype made at Nissan Design America, San Diego. It was designed by student intern Jaebum “JB” Choi to be an autonomous, human-connected vehicle of the far future!

According to the Nissan website, The completed project runs just under 10 feet long and sits just over two feet high. The single occupant, the driver, rests horizontally in a “prone” position with limbs extended in an X-shape. The driver wears a futuristic, form-fitting suit and helmet that resembles a superbike riders’ protective helmets and leathers.

Does it come with a Bat Cave, too?

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Silver Line trolley returns to San Diego!

The nostalgic Silver Line trolley has returned to San Diego!

I saw historic, restored PCC streetcar 529 pulling into America Plaza this morning, and I had to jump aboard. The old trolley cars that run in the downtown Silver Line loop are definitely a very cool San Diego sight!

The Silver Line resumed service today after not running for most of the COVID-19 pandemic. I learned the line will be operating on weekends from this point forward.

I want to give a special shout out to the driver and another MTS employee on the streetcar during my ride. A distressed passenger at one station informed the driver she’d been accidentally separated from some of her belongings. As I looked on from a seat in back, the attentive, friendly MTS guys immediately got on the phone and quickly resolved the situation! The belongings had been found and awaited the passenger at the next station, under guard of an MTS Ambassador! I don’t know the name of the trolley driver, but he and his buddy are totally awesome!

If you like historic old streetcars, watch for the distinctive Silver Line cars running in a loop downtown and jump aboard!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!