Palm Springs Miracle - The Tramway
Construction began in 1960. Opened September 1963.
Architecture: Both tramway stations were designed by notable mid-century modern architects. The Valley Station, finished in 1963, was designed by Albert Frey and Robson C. Chambers. The Mountain Station, built in 1961, was designed by architect E. Stewart Williams. Additionally, the distinctive Tramway Gas Station at the foot of Tramway Road was designed by Frey and Chambers. (From Wikipedia - article)
Palm Springs Life Article - September 3, 2013
Posted in 2008: -Pilot Don Landell came to California from Alberta and helped build the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway, doing lift work in the rugged San Jacinto Mountains. He started Landells Aviation there and was considered one of the most skilled mountain pilots in the west. He died when his JetRanger hit a downdraft in a saddle of the Clark Mountains on the Nevada-California border. He was not wearing a helmet or shoulder harness and his head struck the circuit breaker panel after impact. His two passengers survived. Don was on a desert bighorn sheep-counting mission for the Fish & Wildlife service. http://www.b-roll.net/forum/showthread.php?t=22034
Richard Hart from National Helicopter Service says there were three deaths during the construction. Information posted inside the Tramway station say there were no deaths during construction. (Bit of controversy?) Checked Desert Sun and found two articles. One with two injured helicopter pilots, one with an injured worked. No deaths reported.
Prellinger Archives: Miracle at Palm Springs - video from 1970
Huell Howser's California Gold goes to the Tram (1997)
Mike Rowe's Dirty Jobs
Richard Hart - National Helicopter
Response on 6/30/17 - "That was a long time ago, we might still have some useful information and we could supply aerial filming services should you need current footage."
United Helicopters of Santa Barbara (out of business)
James Landells - Landells Aviation, 69873 Silver Moon Trail, Desert Hot Springs, CA 92241
Phone: (760) 329-6468
Dianne Rothenberg - Miss Tramwayland 1970 - where is she?
Jerry Ogburn - Chairman - contact through Marvin Roos...