This nifty funicular and its Monongahela Incline twin down the road, both built in the late 19th century, are Pittsburgh icons, zipping up the steep slope of Mt Washington every five to 10 minutes. They provide commuters a quick connection, and give visitors great city views, especially at night.
The Duquesne Incline was first opened on May 20, 1877. It was originally used to transport cargo up and down Mt Washington, but local residents who were tired of the steep walk also started using it. It fell into disrepair over time as new forms of transport became more popular, until the local community came together to restore it to its former glory in 1963. They managed to retain all the original features of the ornate wooden cable cars and are the reason it's such a popular tourist attraction to this day.
What's at the top?
The funicular station at the top of Mt Washington has a museum, gift shop, and observation deck. The deck offers some beautiful views of the Pittsburgh skyline. At the top, you can pay 50¢ to see the interior of the machinery that powers the cable cars, watching all the gears and cables at work.
You can make a loop using the two funiculars, going up one, walking along aptly named Grandview Ave (about 1 mile, or take bus 40) and coming down the other. Enjoy some delicious New American cuisine along with an incredible view at Altius. However, if you only have time to ride one, make it the Duquesne (du-kane). The upper station is wheelchair accessible.