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Stalled in its tracks: Zilker Eagle opening delayed again

Train operators have discovered a braking problem.

AUSTIN, Texas — Zilker Park fans hoping to catch a ride on the new Zilker Eagle will have to keep waiting. According to the Austin Parks Foundation, a braking problem has been discovered.

Foundation CEO Colin Wallis posted the following update over the weekend:

"We want to provide an update on the status of the train and why it has taken longer than expected. We understand and share the disappointment about delaying the opening of the Zilker Eagle mini train. For all of us at Austin Parks Foundation, opening the Zilker Eagle this year was our goal.

"Unfortunately, it will not be able to run this year. Safety testing revealed braking problems that need to be addressed. A committee of APF staff and board members has been actively assessing the situation as challenges have arisen and will continue to meet to evaluate the current status, what our options are, and how we will move forward to make the needed repairs.

"We remain committed to ensuring the Zilker Eagle is part of Austin’s future. We will continue to work diligently and tirelessly to bring the train back. Given the current status, we anticipate the earliest the train will be ready will be Fall 2023.

"Thank you so much for your continued support and patience."

Wallis also posted an update in April regarding another delay. At that time, it was due to a safety training extension.

Once given the greenlight, the train will be replacing the longtime Zilker Zephyr. The Zephyr announced its end in early 2020 after its previous vendor cited issues due to erosion from heavy rainfall in 2019.

The parks foundation announced the train's new name in April 2021, a nod to Zilker Park's very first train of 1961.


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