More Elevated Beauty

Post by Steven Dale

Last week’s post about the Randstadrail and elevated infrastructure (both track and station) generated a few comments and a fair bit of email. Most interesting were the number of emails we received from people pointing out beautiful elevated systems around the world. Without fail, these were systems or installations we’d never ever heard of.

With that in mind we thought it would be interesting if Gondola Project readers could help us come up with a list of the ten most beautiful examples of elevated transit infrastructure from around the world. The more obscure, the better.

Send us an email at gondola (at) creativeurbanprojects (dot) com or post in the comments. Wherever possible, please include images and a brief description of what we’re looking at.

We’ll try and have the list up by Friday.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Want more? Purchase Cable Car Confidential: The Essential Guide to Cable Cars, Urban Gondolas & Cable Propelled Transit and start learning about the world's fastest growing transportation technologies.


  1. Look here: http://www.vacuumelevators.com/ http://shweeb.com/index.php?m=transport Crazy enough?
  2. http://www.cities21.org/morgantown_TRB_111504.pdf (found here: http://frank-media.info/en/part-c/electric-mobility/electric-trains-and-prt-systems.html ) http://www.faz.net/s/Rub5785324EF29440359B02AF69CB1BB8CC/Doc~EDC892B1049A84BAEBEF02721B273BA70~ATpl~Ecommon~Scontent.html Sorry it is written in German, but the article describes a ropeway across a river, powered by muscle power, sitting on a „bicycle“. Search for Rainforest Aerial Trams in Costa Rica, Panama, Dominica, St. Luzia and Manizales (Colombia). These open-air- gondolas are crazy and wonderful. The CabriO-Ropeway http://www.stanserhorn.ch/m171_m06/cms/EnBildergallerie.asp I think, You know it. Look and read here: http://www.reconnectingamerica.org/public/show/aerialtram http://www.scribd.com/doc/3897163/Hurcules-Aerial-Tram-Mobility-Study-Report Or immerse in here: http://faculty.washington.edu/jbs/itrans/ Perhaps you will find a crazy system...
  3. An exciting cable car: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dUXYu_dk_MM&feature=related Ore here at Constanta, Black Sea http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=29Rt4skX878 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mamaia
  4. And last but not least: http://www.spiegel.de/video/video-1073296.html this video is in English language.
  5. a whole thread about elevated lines: http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=503599 and here another not-beauty, but a necessity (Mumbai). http://kalyan-city.blogspot.com/2010/03/sky-walk-ulhasnagar-railway-station.html hamburger hochbahn: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3556/3318757963_3c75c4ea36_o.jpg http://www.flickr.com/photos/klaus-pi/3318757963/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/difridi/3622424695/ (i think that design got replaced by boring pillars and flat steel) http://www.karl-gotsch.de/Bilder/HH_Hochbahnviadukt3.jpg Walkway Kew Gardens in London: http://www.wayfaring.info/wp-content/uploads/2008/05/kew_gardens2.jpg Treewalk in Singapore: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_7HORmzFw_HU/TOTkkDLwu3I/AAAAAAAAAHY/Ts0o1KwB5X0/s1600/tree+walk_singapore.jpg Without links: Working Metro/LRT/Rail lines: - Loop in Chicago - Line Q Queens in New York Nonworking ones: - Viaduc des Arts in Paris - High Line in New York CPT Technology: The Venice Doppelmayr connection (though I don't like the design, I like the ending of the connection: http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Venezia_people_mover.JPG ) Roosevelt Island Tramway (I prefer the old design - it was a matching choice of functionality and beauty) Maybe a good idea would be to take a deeper look into the other side of that story? The elevated beasts? Maybe a conclusion would be more obvious?!
  6. http://www.doppelmayr.com/uploads/media/WIR_2006_09_ESP.pdf page 2 But it is a ride on a hill. And I'm searching for a picture "in my brain", a Reversible Ropeway = Aerial Tram luxury gondola up to a casino, I cannot find it at the internet. You know: http://wn.com/DoppelmayrCableCar http://www.wienerzeitung.at/DesktopDefault.aspx?TabID=4975&Alias=wzo&cob=520437 http://www.poma.net/en/project/index/view/id/33 found at http://www.poma.net/en/urban.html http://www.chairlift.org/ ?
  7. Have a look here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6sp7o5xW8Vc You want to see a monorail ride? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lcYyT0WRXRI&feature=related Barcelona Harbor Gondola: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ehC2Zr00qZs http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Port_Vell_Aerial_Tramway
  8. Schwebebahn Dresden, built 1901: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UWLQ2xODoI4&feature=related http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SWmZ3VLVYGE Shytrain Airport Duesseldorf Germany http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OndfzmfgQ-c&feature=related http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nAk5wPjXgiI&feature=related An excellent film: http://www.youtube.com/watch?gl=DE&hl=de&v=_5Pd4mc17zM With fantastic music from hollywood, turn on your speakers loud and make the screen big! And take a look at the Ropeway Detachable Transit Line on the last future picture at the end of the film, parallel to the Cable Liner !
  9. Sorry Skytrain Airport Duesseldorf §:o)) not Shytrain
  10. the difinition of beautiful (or beauty) surely is relative ;)
  11. Reversible Ropeways (Aerial Trams) http://www.carvatech.com/gallery.php?id=2 http://www.carvatech.com/gallery.php?id=2&p=14 http://www.carvatech.com/gallery.php?id=2&p=18 http://www.carvatech.com/gallery.php?id=2&p=24 Detachable Ropeways: http://www.carvatech.com/gallery.php?id=1&p=13 http://www.carvatech.com/gallery.php?id=1&p=23 Cable Cars: http://www.carvatech.com/gallery.php?id=3 http://www.carvatech.com/gallery.php?id=3&p=2 http://www.carvatech.com/gallery.php?id=3&p=5 http://www.carvatech.com/gallery.php?id=3&p=11 http://www.michels-gfk.de/gfk-seilbahn-kabinen.php http://www.heinzalbers.org/page-sg0056.htm The Jewel Cable Cars of sentosa Island: http://www.yellob.us/home/press-room/jewel-cable-car-official-launch http://www.ropeways.net/rnn/bericht.php?wert=2479&wert1=0&zurueck=0 http://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?t=9892 http://www.cwa.ch/de/rotair-_content---1--1066.html
  12. http://www.gangloff.com/E/cabins/index.php
  13. I was always a big fan of the Gotham City Monorail in Batman Begins. I realize its fictional, but the two story art moderne towers did seem very cool. (See photo in this article.) http://www.awn.com/articles/people/vfx-supervisor-paul-franklin-talks-ibatman-beginsi/page/4,1 There are a number of things the Wuppertal Suspension Railway in Wuppertal Germany does well that I think a well planned Gondola project could take advantage of. First, it does a reasonably good job of allowing sunlight to access the street. Second the support structure for the railroad has a pretty small footprint on the street. What this means is that the area under the railroad feels subjectively safe. Look at all of the people window shopping on the street under the rail road. This elevated structure didn't kill streetlife in the city below it. If the sidewalks were wider here on this street, I think a restaurants offering cafe seating would probably thrive here. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0lQjmZFeF8w&feature=related http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWAXnvRbzqc&feature=related The other thing that I think the Wuppertal suspension railway did a great job with was maximizing the utility of an unusual right of way. When you are trying to retrofit a railway into an existing city, often there aren't great choices for rights of way. This where the pressure comes to build over existing roads. But in Wuppertal, they built part of the suspension railway through a creek shed. The view from the suspension railroad through the creekshed is very pretty and yet still highly functional. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dvZWWdFtF2A&feature=related The advantage that an urban Gondola would have over a suspension railroad here is that the infrastructure for an urban Gondola should have an even smaller footprint.
  14. The muscle power ropeway from above: http://www.reisch.at/seilbahnen_frame_e.htm (English language) http://www.michels-gfk.de/gfk-seilbahn-kabinen.php http://www.carvatech.com/gallery.php?id=2 Aerial Trams: http://www.carvatech.com/Pendelbahnen.35.0.html# (look to "Galerie") Detachable Ropeways: http://www.carvatech.com/Umlaufbahnen.36.0.html (look to "Galerie") Cable Cars http://www.carvatech.com/Standseilbahnen.34.0.html Sentosa: http://www.yellob.us/home/press-room/jewel-cable-car-official-launch http://www.heinzalbers.org/page-sg0056.htm http://www.sentosa.com.sg/en/attractions/imbiah-lookout/cable-car/
  15. I probably should have included these stills. http://blogs.mie.utoronto.ca/roller/oscar/entry/suspended_monorail_wuppertal_germany http://members.virtualtourist.com/m/e376/1530/ http://imblacknitravel.com/trains-in-the-sky/ http://ritemail-places.blogspot.com/2009/01/locale-wuppertal-germany.html
  16. Sentosa: http://www.yellob.us/home/press-room/jewel-cable-car-official-launch http://www.heinzalbers.org/page-sg0056.htm http://www.sentosa.com.sg/en/attractions/imbiah-lookout/cable-car/ The muscle power ropeway from above: http://www.reisch.at/seilbahnen_frame_e.htm (English language) http://www.michels-gfk.de/gfk-seilbahn-kabinen.php http://www.carvatech.com/gallery.php?id=2 Aerial Trams: http://www.carvatech.com/Pendelbahnen.35.0.html# (look to "Galerie") Detachable Ropeways: http://www.carvatech.com/Umlaufbahnen.36.0.html (look to "Galerie") Cable Cars http://www.carvatech.com/Standseilbahnen.34.0.html
  17. a funny ropeway: http://wn.com/Seilbahn 1: http://wn.com/Seilbahn Or at the island of Madeira: From Funchal to Monte (a part of town) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vQ-pFTWk7XU At Funchal the station on the bottom is near the harbour, near the centre of town. Top station is inside the town of funchal, the houses of the town are built "up the hills", so it is an urban ropeway, but only used by tourists.