Debut of the Minnesota Zoo Monorail, Apple Valley, Minnesota, 1979

Courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society
The monorail debuted in September 1979.

The Minnesota Zoo announced this week that it’s shutting down its financially troubled monorail. The monorail debuted in September 1979, giving the “New Zoo” (which opened the year before) a touch of futuristic pizzazz. But in the years that followed the space age elevated train encountered frequent money problems including a default on payments and a series of investor lawsuits. Now it has apparently shut down for good, ground to a halt by lethal mixture of visitor indifference (the Minneapolis Star Tribune calls it “‘lame’ and ‘pricey’”) and mechanical obsolescence.

This post was written by Dave Kenney and originally published on MN70s. Follow MN70s on Twitter: @mn70s.

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