System Dossier

07
Jul

2017

System Dossier: Mexicable

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With a population of 21.2 million people, Mexico City is the largest Spanish-speaking city in the world and one of the world’s largest metropolitan areas. Similar to many megalopolis’, the city faces incredible challenges when it comes to congestion. In fact, the Mexican Capital has been ranked as the world’s most congested city where residents spend an average of 2.5 hours each day commuting!

To improve transportation options for its residents, a 4.9 kilometre Cable Propelled Transit (CPT) system was built in 2016 in the disadvantaged hillside community of Ecatepec de Morelos. The 7-station line, completed by LEITNER Ropeways, transports passengers from the isolated region of Sán Andres de la Cañada (located at the Sierra de Guadalupe mountain) to Via Morelos where commuters can connect to the Mexibús system.

The Monocable Detachable Gondola (MDG) system was financed through a combination of public and private sector funds with the federal and state government covering 40% of implementation costs. Thanks to the cable car, travel times have been reduced from 1-2 hours to just 17 minutes.



While Mexico’s first urban cable car has shaved countless hours off commute times, relieving transport congestion is not the only noticeable benefit of the system. Numerous socio-economic benefits such as increased tourism, a greater sense of inclusion, and enhanced passenger safety have all been reported by residents.

As one of the most dangerous municipalities in Mexico City, Ecatepec residents were often a victim of crime while taking public transit in the past. However, since the opening of the cable car, residents have reported being robbed less while feeling much safer onboard a secure gondola that is being constantly monitored by CCTV.

In addition, the cable car is electrically powered which significantly reduces COemissions. This advantage is particularly important in a city that is consumed by extreme levels of smog.



Lastly, the cable car has brought important progress to Ecatapec, one of the poorest regions in the city. Street lamps have been built, roads have been paved, and public spaces have been revamped. Over 50 street-art murals were painted along the cable car route, helping create a more scenic and memorable ride. Since opening, Mexicable has been a remarkable success and continues to attract approximately 20,000 riders per day.


Year opened 2016
Length (km) 4.9
Line Capacity (pphpd) 3,000
Cabin Capacity 10
Stations 7
Fare 6 pesos (US$0.30)
Trip Time (minutes) 17


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27
Jun

2017

System Dossier: Teleférico da Providência (Providência Cable Car)

Teleferico da Providencia in Rio de Janeiro. Image by Flickr user Mídia NINJA.

Morro de Providência is a favela located just north of downtown Rio de Janeiro. This community is regarded as the city’s first favela (informal settlement) with beginnings that date back to 1897. Soldiers returning from the Canudos War decided to inhabit the area after the promise of homes by the government was left unfulfilled.

As the community is situated on a hillside, the neighbourhood’s topographical barriers have left residents with poor access to municipal services and has facilitated social exclusion. In an effort to improve conditions within Morro da Providência, the government invested R$163 million to integrate and “re-urbanize” Rio’s informal settlements into the city proper. These efforts were enacted as part of the program called Morar Carioca. The program sought to enhance quality of life through diverse actions that included sanitation and road reforms, housing construction, and transportation improvements.

Artwork from school children depicted on the cabins. Image by Flickr user Mídia NINJA.

Introduced to the neighbourhood in 2014, the Teleférico da Providência was the second Cable Propelled Transit (CPT) system to open in Rio de Janeiro after the Teleférico do Alemão. The cable car, built by Doppelmayr, is a 721 meter-long MDG system that travels through Morro da Providência in just 5 minutes.

The cable car begins at the Estacio Central do Brasil (Rio’s central train station), and ascends the hillside to Americo Brum — located at the top of hill (situated 83 meters above sea level). This is the station where residents of the community get on and off the cable car. From there, the cable car descends into the district of Gamboa. Both terminal stations are strategically located next to higher order transit lines.

Whereas Gamboa station is situated next to Providência station on the VLT Carioca Line 1 (LRT), Central station connects riders to a diverse array of transport lines which include Metrô Rio (subway), Supervia (commuter rail) and a bus terminal. The cable car provides much-needed transit improvements to a formerly disconnected area which in the past was just serviced by uncoordinated fleets of moto taxis and mini-buses.

As part of efforts to build community, the cable car’s cabins feature artworks drawn by students from the local Francisco Benjamin Galloti Municipal school.

The cable car is operated by the Urban Development Company of the Region of Porto de Rio de Janeiro and serves 20,000 local residents. The Teleferico Da Providencia has made a profound impact on Providencia and demonstrates how ropeways can shape the routine and culture of a community by making life just a little bit simpler on a day-to-day basis.

 

Year Opened 2014
Length (km) 0.721
Stations 3
Capacity (pphpd) 1000
Trip Time (minutes) 5
Speed (m/s) 5
Fare (USD) $0.30

 

 

 

 



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07
Jun

2017

System Dossier: Bursa Teleferik (Bursa Gondola)

The Bursa Teleferik. Image by Flickr user Kaan Süleymanoglu.

Uludağ is a highly regarded mountain and recreational resort situated at the highest peak of the western Anatolia region in Turkey. The resort is a year-round attraction that offers skiing in the winter and hiking in the summer.

Access to the popular vacation destination has been served by an aerial tram that has connected the ski resort to the nearby Turkish city of Bursa since 1963. However, by 2012, the cable car was considered outdated and the city decided to install a new ropeway system. As such, Bursa commissioned LEITNER Ropeways to build a record setting gondola.

The Bursa Teleferik. Image by Flickr user ustegen.

The new 8.8km cable car, completed in 2014, officially became the world’s longest monocable detachable gondola (MDG). The system begins its journey at Teferrüç station located at the southern end of Bursa. From there, the cable car travels through two more stations (Kadıyayla, and Saralan) before it reaches the summit of the Uludağ at Kurbağa Kaya station.

Each station, designed by Turkish architect Yamaç Korfali, offers their own various services from shopping centers to restaurants to hotels. To reach the top of the Uludağ, the cable car climbs a vertical distance of 1,400 meters.

The Bursa Teleferik. Image by Flickr user sinan özcan.

One of the many advantages of the upgraded ropeway is that it significantly increases accessibility to the resort. Previously, the only way to access the resort was through 35 kilometres of winding road.

Another advantage of the cable car is that this transportation option has become its own popular attraction. Many visitors ride the cable car to simply view the region’s lush vegetation and wildlife during the 25-minute trip to Uludağ. The Bursa Teleferik demonstrates that cable technology can be a reliable transport option for hard-to-reach locations while also giving its passengers an unforgettable ride experience.


Year opened (reopened) 1963 (2014)
Length (km) 8.8
Stations 4
Capacity (pphpd) 1,500
Trip time (minutes) 25
Speed (m/s) 6.0
Fare 20 Turkish Liras (10 USD)

 



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26
May

2017

System Dossier: Bondinho Aparecida (Aparecida Cable Car)

Bondinho Aparecida approaching the Morro de Cruzeiro. Image by Flickr user Fábio Canhim

Aparecida is a quaint city in Brazil located approximately halfway between Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. The city is a center of religious tourism that sees 11 million tourists who flock to the city on an annual basis to experience the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida – the largest Marian shrine in the world, the second largest church in the world, and also the origin of the city’s name. Another popular tourist hotspot is the Morro de Cruzeiro, a religious hill that overlooks the city. On top of the hill lies access to the Torre Mirante, another attraction that acts as a lookout tower.

Bondinho Aparecida overlooking the National Shrine. Image by Flickr user Fábio Canhim

To improve connectivity between these two sites, private developers financed a 1.1-kilometer cable car that takes passengers on a vertical rise of 117 meters from the base of the National Shrine to the top of the Morro do Cruzeiro. The MDG system, known to the city as the “cable car of the patroness” is operated by the tourist agency Bontur. In the first year of operation, the cable car, which consists of 47 cabins holding 6 passengers each, attracted over one million riders. This demonstrates the ropeway’s popularity amongst tourists. On the ride passengers can experience incredible views of the city and the National Shrine.

Sai da frente que o bonde 🚊 vai passar 😄😎😀 dia #maravilhoso ♥♥♥ #bondinhoaparecida #aparecida #fé #paz #amor #felicidade

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However, despite the success of the gondola, its construction didn’t come without conflict. During the development phase of the gondola, many residents of Aparecida were unhappy with the cable car route as the ropeway crossed over several residential homes and a neighborhood cemetery.

Some residents described the gondola’s setting as “disrespectful”, and “an invasion of privacy” while others described it as the best thing to have happened in the city. Therefore, while ropeways can add a unique charm to the city, they can also cause problems with local residents. Developers should be conscious of these issues when constructing cable cars and should make great efforts to work collaboratively with the local community.


Year opened 2014
Length (km) 1.1
Capacity (pphpd) 1500
One-way fare (Brazilian Real) 14
Stations 2

 



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.

06
Apr

2017

System Dossier: Expo Alt Urban Gondola (Telecabina Aramón Zaragoza 2008)

Expo Alt Urban Gondola. Image by Flickr user jmig1.

Zaragoza is a historical city in Spain that dates back to Roman times. Located at the center of the Ebro Valley, Zaragoza’s historical influence from a variety of cultures helped differentiate itself from its more well-known neighbours, Madrid and Barcelona.

Zaragoza is a highly prosperous city, which is demonstrated by its wide boulevards, and high-end shopping and dining. In 2008, it hosted the World Fair which attracted 5.6 million visitors.

The main site of the Expo, which housed many of the pavilions, was a 62-acre set of land situated along the Ebro River. Projects such as the 80-meter Water Tower and the fresh water aquarium (Europe’s largest) were constructed in consistency with the Expo’s theme of water preservation and conservation.

 

Expo Alt. Image by Flickr user Loadmaster.

Expo Alt. Image by Flickr user Loadmaster.

Adding even more excitement to the Zaragoza Expo was the installation of Expo Alt, a 1.2 km cable car ride that transported passengers to the Expo site. The MDG system built by Leitner Ropeways transported passengers across the Ebro River to the Expo site from one of Zaragoza’s main train stations, Zaragoza-Delicias. The cable car was operated by Aramón Group, a renowned Spanish firm who owns and operates five ski resorts within the Aragonian region.

During the trip, riders would be elevated to a height of 50 meters allowing for some fantastic views of both the beautifully designed Water Tower and Bridge Pavillion. Even at the stations, riders were treated to some splendid architecture. Both stations, designed by the Spanish Architect Ignacio Vicens, capture the intricate structure of an ice crystal.

Expo Alt urban cable car crossing the Ebro River. The Bridge Pavilion can be seen beneath the gondola. Image by Flickr user by jmig1.

At the conclusion of the Expo’s three-month span, the gondola attracted one million passengers — demonstrating the system’s importance in bringing visitors to the Expo site. As ridership slowed down after the Expo, system operations were eventually discontinued.



Year Opened (closed) 2008 (2011)
Distance (km) 1.2
Stations 2
Speed (m/s) 6.0
Capacity (pphpd) 2600
Fare round-trip (euros) 5


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Expo Alt (Telecabina Aramón Zaragoza 2008) / Installations / System Dossier
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02
Mar

2017

System Dossier: Kobe Nunobiki Ropeway

 

The Shin-Kobe Ropeway. Image by Flickr user Valeri-DBF

The Shin-Kobe Ropeway. Image by Flickr user Valeri-DBF.

The maritime city of Kobe is highly regarded as one of Japan’s most attractive cosmopolitan cities. For many centuries, Kobe has acted as an important port for the Kansai region and was one of Japan’s first ports to open for trade with the West. This shouldn’t come as a surprise to many, but the city is the source of the popular cuisine dish, Kobe beef.

A popular tourist site situated to the north of the city along the Rokko mountain range is the Nunobiki Herb Garden – home to 75,000 unique types of herbs. Connecting tourists to the garden from the city is accomplished by a 1.5 km urban gondola system.

Built initially in 1991, the gondola was upgraded to an MDG system in 2011 by Nippon Cable. Before the upgrade, the system was operated by Kōbe City Urban Development (神戸市都市整備公社) but is now owned by Kobe City and managed by Kobe Resort Services (神戸リゾートサービス ).

 

View of mid-station. Image by Flickr user Henry Lau.

The base station of the Kobe Nunobiki Ropeway is conveniently located 5 minutes from the Shin-Kobe train station. From there, the gondola makes an intermediate stop at Kaze no Oka station, which is located at the bottom of the Herb Garden. From Kaze no Oka, passengers can access hiking trails leading to Mount Maya and the Nunobiki waterfalls.

Lastly, the cable car reaches its destination of Nunobiki Observation Deck where tourists can experience scenic views of Kobe (and even the distant Osaka if visibility allows it). A fascinating feature regarding the ropeway is the medieval Tudor design of each station. While this is an architectural style not often seen in urban cable cars, the design fits in appropriately to the garden’s naturalistic and serene ambiance.

The Ninokobe Herb Garden Observatory Deck. Image by Flickr user Manish Prabhune

The Ninokobe Observatory Deck. Image by Flickr user Manish Prabhune.

All the gondola’s 69 cabins are composed of glass around all sides allowing for panoramic vistas of the garden and city at day or night, making the trip up to the destination just as exciting as the actual destination. The ropeway has been a premiere attraction in Kobe for nearly 3 decades now and demonstrates once again how urban gondola technology can enhance visitor experience and satisfaction.



Year opened (upgraded) 1991 (2011)
Length (km) 1.5
Trip Time (minutes) 6.5-10
Stations 3
Capacity (pphpd) 1,800
Speed (m/s) 4
Fare both ways (Yen) 1,400


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09
Feb

2017

System Dossier: Constantine Cable Car (Télécabine de Constantine)

Constantine Cable Car. Image by Flickr user Bilouk Bilouk

Constantine Cable Car. Image by Flickr user Bilouk Bilouk

The mountainous terrain of Algeria poses a unique challenge for urban planners and developers. To solve this problem, several Cable Propelled Transit (CPT) systems have been built in Algerian cities throughout the country. These include ropeway systems in Algiers, Skikda, Tlemcen and Constantine. The installation of these gondola networks has been crucial to improving traffic flow and mitigating vehicular congestion.

In particular, Constantine has experienced great success with its urban cable car. Known as the City of Bridges, the municipality has built numerous overpasses to improve connectivity throughout the city’s challenging terrain. However, with rapid growth in the city, many of the existing bridges became overwhelmed. After much contemplation by city officials, the plan to construct the Constantine Cable Car (French: Télécabine de Constantine) was finally conceived in late 2006, and by June 2008, the system opened to the public.

Constantine Cable Car. Image by Flickr user Bilouk Bilouk

Constantine Cable Car. Image by Flickr user Bilouk Bilouk

With the arrival of the gondola, 100,000 residents in the city’s northern quarters were benefitted alongside 5,000 hospital workers.

The Constantine Cable Car is an MDG system built by the Doppelmayr Garaventa Group that transports passengers across the Rhumel Gorge. The system was designed with thirty-three 15-person cabins and an initial capacity of 2,000 pphpd. However, the capacity is expandable to 2,400 pphpd should passenger flows increase in the future.

The cable car makes 3 stops along its 7-minute journey: Terrain Tannoudji, Ben Badis Hospital, and Place Tatache. Since opening, the cable car has been an incredible success carrying 4.5 million passengers in its first year of operation and reaching 12 million passengers by 2012. This urban gondola is another example of how a CPT system can effectively enhance and complement a city’s existing infrastructure network.



Year opened 2008
Length (km) 1.63
Trip time (minutes) 7
Capacity (pphpd) 2,000 (expandable to 2,400)
Speed (m/s) 6.0

 

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