In our second Silver Streak movie then and now series we pick a very obscure location. Situated within the bowels of CPR’s huge Alyth yard complex in Calgary, in this view the highjacked train hurtles by on the tracks above with the police in hot pursuit. Interesting, where we shot from is actually on a public pathway. No trespassing required!
This scene takes place near the climax of the movie with the train speeding out of control towards the station. In a grand finale it crashes into it before coming to rest in the main concourse.
It’s a pretty good movie and a worthwhile watch if you can find it (we did at the library) and while the train scenes are often technically flawed (who would catch that but a train buff), that’s doesn’t detract from the fun.
While most of we see here is CPR property, the track above that that Silver Streak is on actually belongs to the CNR. To the left it leads to a small interchange yard where the two railways exchange cars. Further left and above us is the eastern throat of the massive Alyth yard and the road the police car is on ducks under those tracks (as does the pathway).
It’s interesting to see how little has changed in the almost forty years since the two scenes were shot. The bridge on the right is basically the same as it was and the yard control tower is instantly recognizable. The road the car is on is still there as well although it’s been set back a bit. This road allows access to the tower seen in back. The only changes is the public pathway which follows the Bow River (right behind us). One thing has remained a constant though, it’s still a gritty, greasy, noisy rail yard.
The movie Silver Streak was filmed in many locations within the province of Alberta with many scenes being shot right here in Calgary. In addition to this location we have identified at least a half dozen others in town. Many are publicly accessible, but a few are not, so we won’t be able to duplicate all of them.
The second then image shows the train on the CNR bridge and I have included a now image of it, although from an opposite angle. It does play a role in the next scene after all. This massive structure celebrated it’s 100th year in 2011 and the date 1911 can be seen on one pier. The pathway we came in on ducks under it via a cantilevered walkway. For this location you can use the pathway to head into downtown via the Inglewood Bird Sanctuary, or one can head south into the neighbourhoods of Lynnwood Ridge, Ogden and Riverbend.
This location seems obscure or even odd but I was able to instantly recognize it as a place we passed by before while walking on that pathway.
Images from the movie are copyright 20th Century Fox.
Update: June 2013. Late this month the CPR bridge seen in the report was damaged by flood waters and it partially collapsed while a train crossed. To see a report on this structure, click the link below…
Collapsed Bonnybrook train bridge.
To see other Silver Streak then and now shots taken in Calgary, check out the links below…
Silver Streak movie then and now – boarded up train station.
Silver Streak movie then and now – bridge jump.
Silver Streak movie then and now – small town station.
If you wish more information on this place, by all means contact us!
Date: February, 2013.
Location: Calgary, AB.