What are you building?

The “Bradford Access Project” is the construction of an inclined elevator that will extend the Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Museum’s (PMPM) front door down to Bradford Street, granting easier access to and from Provincetown’s downtown area. 

What are the goals of the Bradford Access Project?

We want everyone to enjoy the richness of Provincetown and its history. By extending our front door to Bradford Street, we can facilitate even more commerce with our local businesses and excitement for visitors. The value of the Bradford Access Project will be felt long after its completion.

The inclined elevator will improve physical access from PMPM to Bradford Street and Commercial Street. It will provide a safe and simple way to get to the streets that will connect visitors with the shops, restaurants, wharf areas, Town Hall and other important landmarks in Provincetown. The institution’s vision, dating back to 1910, was to create a connection with the Town of Provincetown and the Pilgrim Monument. The Monument stands tall as a beacon of welcoming, tolerance and acceptance. During the height of the Portuguese fishing industry, the Monument was even used by mariners to locate their home, Provincetown, a place of safety. Like today, we welcome all to Provincetown and the connection to the Monument is made stronger by the construction of the inclined elevator. We see the inclined elevator as the realization of the vision with the goal to grow and make the institution stronger.

This is just the first step in a journey to transform PMPM from a local, community museum into a world-class destination for history enthusiasts. By providing accurate and informative education about our town, and its original inhabitants, the Wampanoag Nation, our true place in history will be assured.

What is an Inclined Elevator?

An inclined elevator is a mode of transportation that uses a multi component cable system for pedestrian conveyance up an inclined surface. The incline elevator cab operates by means of a three-phase tension gear motor. The cab has polyurethane caster wheels that glide along a double-rail hot-dipped galvanized steel track.

What is the sound impact?

The sound levels will be in full compliance with town regulations. PMPM consulted with an acoustical engineer to determine what sound levels of the incline elevator operation will generate. They provided a summary based on the analysis of some existing installations in Europe. That summary is as follows: Sound levels of the measured incline elevator… ranges from 45-57 dBA, depending on location and type of noise… During normal operation, sound levels produced by the cab along the track and the traction cable guide rolls are minimally noticeable depending on the background sound environment. Sound levels in the range of 45-60 dBA can be associated with a typical office environment… and normal speech conversation at a distance of 5-10 feet… Sound produced by the incline elevator during normal operation is not expected to be audible unless someone is standing next to the track as the cab passes by. Clicking sounds associated with the cab door opening and closing may be audible in the platform vicinity but are not expected to be audible at nearby residential properties. During daytime use… that sound from the proposed incline elevator will blend in with the existing background sound of the environment.

What is the lighting impact?

Lighting impact is designed to have levels that are residential in nature but satisfy all code requirements. The lighting has been designed to reflect the scale of the adjacent residential neighborhood. Lighting is to be LED, which uses a lower energy consumption and longer life span. The color temperature of the lighting will be provided with a more residential scaled warm white. The lighting will be provided with glare accessories, which will significantly reduce the unnecessary spill light to adjacent properties.

How will pedestrian safety be addressed?

The PMPM traffic consultant, McMahon and Transportation Engineers and Planners, has done a complete traffic study of the area where the incline elevator will be located off of Bradford Street. There will be new signage on Bradford Street to show directions to the inclined elevator, the new front door of the Pilgrim Monument. There will also be a traffic monitoring program to analyze the potential impact of traffic that will take place before, during and after construction in the area of Bradford and Ryder Streets.

Will the Monument be accessible?

In addition to the inclined elevator providing ADA compliant access from Bradford Street to the Monument grounds, two ADA compliant parking spaces will also be constructed adjacent to the base of the Monument with ramp access to the Monument platform. 

For the first time, visitors needing ADA access will be able to travel independently from Bradford Street to the Monument. 

What is the timeline for construction?

Construction began in May of 2020. Our hope is to see the inclined elevator carrying riders in Spring of 2021. The rails arrived and were installed the week of January 4, 2021. 

The construction timeline will be affected by further developments in the COVID-19 situation. The safety of everyone involved is our utmost priority.

Who will be building it?

The Bradford Access Project has a local development team. The general contractor is the Robert B. Our Company, a family-owned business from Harwich.

Construction for the Bradford Access Project will be assisted by Jay Cashman, Inc. of Quincy, founded by Jay Cashman, whose ancestor was involved in the building of the Monument that started in 1907 and finished in 1910.

Other team members are Coastal Engineering Company Inc. of Orleans; landscape architects Hawk Design, Inc. of Sandwich; architects Brown, Lindquist, Fenuccio & Raber of Yarmouth Port; Safe Harbor environmental consultants of Wellfleet; McMahon Transportation Engineers & Planners of Taunton; Arrowstreet of Boston;  BOLD Lighting of Los Angeles and New York City; Outdoor Engineers of Colorado and Switzerland; and Elevator Service Company of Torrington, CT.

How big are the pavilions?

Each pavilion is 20 feet by 20 feet. 

How tall is the inclined elevator?

The inclined elevator will lift passengers 80 feet. 

What are the tracks made of?

Galvanized steel.

What is the cost of the project?

Total costs are forecasted to be roughly $4.5 – 5.0 million. No public money from the town is being used. The Cape Cod Pilgrim Memorial Association, who oversees PMPM, is paying for the project, and the new inclined elevator will operate on land already owned by the Association.  

The project received a grant of $200,000 from the Massachusetts Cultural Council for its design and construction. A $4.5 million loan was secured from the Cooperative Bank of Cape Cod as well as support from MassDevelopment.

We welcome sponsors and encourage individuals to donate via our website.

How many riders can it carry?

Up to 18 passengers at a time.

How long will a trip take?

Approximately two minutes in each direction. 

How much will it cost to ride?

Riding the inclined elevator is included in the cost of admission to PMPM – there’s no additional charge.

What will be the hours of operation?

The inclined elevator’s hours of operation will mirror PMPM’s.

For technical details about the inclined elevator, please read this article in Civil Engineering Magazine.