If you’ve been to Portland, you’ve probably seen the aerial tram or driven under it. You may have even taken a ride on it to get up Marquam Hill to OHSU. You might not know the history of the tram though, or how much work it takes to keep it running smoothly day in and day out.
Portland’s Aerial tram offers unique and stunning views of the Rose City as it takes riders 500 feet up Marquam hill at 22 miles per hour. Nearly 10,000 people take the tram on a daily basis. Frequent tram riders include OHSU patients, staff and students, and other Portlanders and tourists looking to get to the top to hike and take in the views.
The aerial tram cost 57 million dollars to build (40 million of which was paid for by OHSU), and opened in December 2006. It was built to relieve traffic carrying up to 20,000 people a day to and from OHSU up two narrow two lane roads.
Riding The Aerial Tram
The lower tram terminal sits at the busy intersection of SW Moody and Gibbs in the South Waterfront neighborhood. This mind-boggling intersection has a pedestrian bridge, shuttles, buses, cars, a streetcar, a cycle track, and bicycle parking. Not just any bicycle parking mind you, but parking with a free bike valet service.
If you’d like to ride the tram, it runs on weekdays from 5:30 am to 9:30 pm and on Saturday from 9 am to 5 pm. It’s closed on some Sundays. You can see a full list of expected closures here. Round trip fare is currently $4.70. Keep in mind the ticket machines at the lower terminal only accept debit or credit cards. Kids 6 and under ride free. A number of passes are also accepted.
Five Week Portland Tram Closure
If you’re planning to ride this summer, it’s important to note the tram will be closed for maintenance from June 23, 2018 to July 30th, 2018. If you’d like to know more about how and why the tram is undergoing maintenance, watch the video below.