Tuesday, August 05, 2008

New York World's Fair

Once upon a time there was a magical fair in New York City. A fair in which there was still a hopeful vision of the future, in spite of some tumultuous current events.

Walt Disney had certainly done his part to bring the idea of Monorails to a large audience, but I don't know if they were ever taken seriously as a cure for gridlock. Instead they seemed to exist more as amusement park curiosities (with a few exceptions). The AMF Monorail at the Fair consisted of 7 two-car trains with a maximum capacity of 80 passengers each. They cruised 40 feet above the fair, and inspired a very cool toy. There was even a Monorail song!

Want a closer look? It's not as sleek or cool as the Disneyland version, but it's still very nice!

This one has nothing to do with the Monorail, but I thought I'd include it as an added bonus. And no additional cost to you! I know, it's kind of dark. Favorite detail: The sign stuck to that arch encouraging folks to go and see James Bond's car! "Goldfinger" was released in September of that year. According to Wikipedia, the movie grossed roughly $125 million dollars; the "inflation adjusted total boxoffice" is over $860 million!


Anonymous said...

I've heard it suggested that a Monorail is a joke to some public transit peeps.

But then, so is their actual public transit.

shhh - even Disney could stand to replace some bus lines with some new Monorail lines, mbut haven't yet, possibly for some of the same reasons the transit peeps haven't tried them... reasons that I suspect don't have much if anything to do with Monorails. In my alien armchair speculation I think they're still both potentially valid and way cool.

aaaand I love seeing your pics of 'em.

TokyoMagic! said...

As a kid, there was just something a little scarier about riding a monorail that hung below the track....like the ones at the L.A. County Fairgrounds and the ones at Busch Gardens in Van Nuys.

Terrific pics! Still can hardly believe this was all built just to be torn down two years later!

Vintage Disneyland Tickets said...

The L.A. Fair had (has?) ones kind of like these, and yes Tokyomagic, those kind of monorails scare me too!

Did you know one of the AMF world’s monorails still exists? Well sorta, check out "the fate of car #4" at


The link is also a great64 World Fair site.

Super post!

The Viewliner Limited said...

Great pictures of the fair Major. The Knotts pictures are awesome. Glad to be back.

Katella Gate said...

AMF?? Don't they make bowling balls?

Anonymous said...

Dang, that first pic of the Monorail with a sort of orange late afternoon sun is a knock-out.

Kevin Kidney said...

I want to see the Goldfinger car!

These are really great shots. I never get tired of seeing the 64 Fair.

Nancy said...

love the monorail..great pics! they remind me of the movie Fahrenheit 451, which is where i first saw a below-the-track monorail.... hope to work on the platform one of these days : )