In Memory of Merrill Cohn

July 20, 2005

Merrill brought to the “Friends” a rich and varied 40-year professional record in civil engineering. He held a B.S., Civil Engineering (Transportation - Railroads & Highways) from the University of California, 1949.

He was recently engaged on Joint Powers Board San Jose Caltrain Commuter Railway Maintenance Facility and Yard project focusing on data assembly, permit coordination, review of design criteria and schedules. Previously, Merrill was employed by the City and County of San Francisco where he held positions as Civil Engineer, Transit Equipment Engineer, Senior Civil Engineer, Manager of Civil Engineering, Project Manager, and Senior Project Manager. He was responsible for coordination of design and construction of San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District Rail and Station facilities in San Francisco including the reconstruction of Market Street; design, construction management, and project management for the Municipal Railway Metro subway, surface rail and yard projects; and design and procurement of light rail vehicles, trolley buses, diesel buses, and other rolling stock. Other design and construction projects that he managed included Green Division Rail Center, Geneva Carhouse, Woods Division Bus maintenance center, Muni Metro Subway Tunnels and Stations, Metro Subway extension and turnaround project, and Green Division Administration Building. As Manager of Civil Engineering he was also responsible for San Francisco Water Department, Hetch Hetchy Water and Power, and Americans with Disabilities Act projects. As Senior Project Manager, he was responsible for all Municipal Railway Capital Projects. Notably, Merrill was deeply involved with the cable car rehabilitation program (1982-1984).

Before being employed by the City and County of San Francisco, he served in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for twenty-two and half years before retiring with the rank of Lt. Colonel.

Besides his rich and useful engineering experience Merrill provided the “Friends” with a unique knowledge of the governmental process. Merrill was, for example, the “Friends” lead for the design, construction and installation of the Friedel Klussmann Memorial Arch at Hyde and Beach Streets and the reinstallation of the Andrew Smith Hallidie memorial at Powell and Market Streets.

Merrill Cohn at the 2005 Bell-Ringing Contest

Merrill Cohn with Byron Cobb, Gilberto Godoy, and Frank Ware at the Bell-Ringing Contest in Union Square - July 14, 2005.
Friends of the
Cable Car