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These Awesome, Retro CTA Cars Will Run Wednesday. Here’s How To Get A Ride

The historic cars will only be available to riders as part of the 75th anniversary celebrations for the State Street subway.

The CTA touted its 4000-series subway cars for the 75th anniversary of the State Street subway opening.
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DOWNTOWN — The CTA is offering rides on its retro 4000-series train cars on Wednesday.

The cars were among the first to operate in the subway, according to the CTA, and they’re being putting back into service (at least temporarily) as part of the 75th anniversary of the State Street subway opening.

The cars had incandescent lights, “relatively simple electric motors” and were the first Chicago train cars made with steel instead of wood for safety, according to the CTA. Passengers were able to open the windows to get a fresh breath of air and the cars’ cushions were originally plush.

“While today’s cars can easily reach our systemwide speed limit of 55 mph … these cars tended to max out around 45 mph and had a completely different feel and sound — but one we find warm and charming on the special occasions we start these cars up today,” according to the CTA.

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Those who are interested in hitching a ride have to submit an online form for a chance to get tickets. The CTA will contact people who are picked for tickets and the tickets can be picked up at a will-call table at the south entrance of the Red Line Lake station.

A limited number of first-come, first-served trips will also be available after trips for ticket-holders are done — if time permits. Approximate times for those rides will be posted to the CTA website on Wednesday.