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Dubuque, Iowa: Fenelon Place Elevator

An incline railway that runs 296 feet up and down a hill. Built as a cable car in 1882 by rich banker J.K. Graves: his house was at the top of the hill, his bank was at the bottom, and he wanted a short-cut so he'd have time to go home for lunch and take a nap.

Visitor Tips and News About Fenelon Place Elevator

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Fenelon Place Elevator

My lovely wife "insisted" we ride this to the top of a really steep hill. I figured if the Amish folks weren't afraid to take the trip, I better not wimp out! Ignoring the greasy-looking steel cable, the ancient wooden ties and the slightly squeaky, rattling ride to the top, it was worth every penny of the $2/each round trip ticket price. Great view from the top, nice lady running the cars will answer all your tourist questions and make sure you take your camera.

[Dale Divers, 09/08/2010]


Fenelon Place Elevator

Quite popular on weekend days in the summer, the Fenelon Place Elevator is now operated by a quiet, non-talkative operator who is quick to stop the elevator when a passenger leaves their seat during the 1-minute ride (oops, sorry madam).

The view of Dubuque and the Mississippi River from the top is impressive. And how many of today's tourist attractions can be enjoyed for $2 (for one round trip)?

[Jeff Hoskinson, 07/03/2008]
Fenelon Place Elevator

In Dubuque is the well known Fenelon Place Elevator, which is really a funicular inclined railway. It was first built in 1882, and rebuilt many times, but it is still the world's steepest, shortest scenic railway. Even the operators of the Hong Kong peak tram (which is the steepest, longest one) came to visit. All this is told by a kind, old chatterbox operator whose "canned" tourist response is irresistable.

[Steve Williams, 01/03/2000]

The Fourth Street Elevator is 189 feet up and down, a "Magnificent view of three states."

Fenelon Place Elevator

512 Fenelon Place, Dubuque, IA
South side of downtown. Runs up and down the hillside between Fenelon Place and W. 4th St. Better to park at the top (residential street parking) and go down to visit shops at bottom in Cable Car Square, then ride elevator back up to top; at bottom there are parking meters.
Daily April-Nov. 8am-10pm (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Round-trip $4.
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
Save to My Sights

Nearby Offbeat Places

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In the region:
Carved Sturgeon Photo Opportunity, Prairie du Chien, WI - 45 mi.

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