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San Diego Railroad Modeling Museum

San Diego Railroad Modeling Museum 

Museum of Railroad Modeling in San Diego (San Diego, USA) – expositions, opening hours, address, phone numbers, official website.

This museum with an area of ​​2500 sq. m is the largest indoor exhibition of its kind in the United States and one of the largest in the world. The Museum (abbreviated as SDMRM) occupies the lower floor of the Casa de Balboa, which stands on Prado Boulevard in Balboa Park. SDMRM opened in 1982 and has visited nearly 3 million people since then. Today in the museum you can see several model railways of the HO and N scale, which are among the largest in the world. Two models of the BUT scale are already large enough, and also the model of scale N covers an area of ​​110 square meters. m, and a model of scale O – 250 sq. m.Plus, there is a gallery of O-scale three-track toy trains of the Lionel type.

The Tehacapi-Pass model is especially interesting. It is unique in its size and geographical accuracy, with which it matches the original. Thousands of photographs of a real railway were used to create it, so that the model literally repeats every bend and every arrow on a real existing line.

Thousands of photographs of a real railway were used to create the Tehacapi Pass model, so that the copy literally repeats every bend and every arrow.

Among the rail lines on display are Cabrillo & Southwestnern (the road from San Diego to Sacramento) on a scale of O; the Pacific Desert line (which was designed, but not built), it includes a copy of 33 miles (that is, in reality – 331 m) of the canvas; the San Diego & Arizona Eastern RR line (420 sq. m replica of the line that ran east from San Diego Union Station through the Carrizo Gorge into the desert to El Centro); and the unique Tehacapi Pass (a two-tiered OO scale model representing the Southern Pacific / Santa Fe junction from Bakersfield to Mojave, built in the 1950s with the Tehacapi loop).

The first railroad modeler club was established in San Diego in 1939. Today, SDMRM has four clubs, all non-profit, like the museum itself.

The Toy Train Gallery includes four separate train lines with realistic scenery and many control options. The gallery features working Lionel-type toy trains, a collection of rare Lionel and American Flyer cars from the 1920s and 1950s, as well as modern Lionel, MTH, K-Line and Atlas-O toy trains.

The history of the most model railway in Balboa Park began much earlier: in 1935, when the international exhibition “California-Pacific” was held here. Railroad model pioneer Minton Cronkheight designed several roads for the park, including a large O-scale exhibit. The Atchinson, Topeka and Santa Fe Railways and Pennsylvania Railroad companies hired him to create giant models for the World’s Fairs to stimulate interest. to travel by train and thus helped to revive the national economy during the Great Depression.

Practical information

Address: 1649 El Prado No. 4.

Opening hours: Tuesday to Friday from 11:00 to 16:00, Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 to 17:00.

Admission: USD 11.50 for adults, USD 9 for seniors, USD 6 for students, USD 6 for children 6-14 years old when visiting with adults, for children under 5 years old – free admission.

Web site

The prices on the page are for March 2020.

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