01
Dec

2023

Weekly Roundup: Birthday Upgrades in the Works for Manakamana Cable Car

Post by Gondola Project

Announced on the system’s 25th anniversary, these updates will bring the Nepalese cable car into the digital era, phasing out the analog technology it’s relied on since opening. Other improvements include replacing the control system, communication cables, and cabins. Image credits to Dhilung, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons.
  • Blue Mountain Resort considers adding a year-round gondola to the area. The new system would have its base station at the Plunge parking lot, allowing tourists and resort visitors to take the gondola up to the top of the mountain year-around. A new lodge would be constructed near the base station and feature different amenities. The project is currently going through the approval process.
  • Manakamana cable car is undergoing upgrades following its 25th anniversary. The analog technology will be replaced with the newest digital system, D-Connect, from Doppelmayr. Other upgrades include replacing the control system, communication lines, cabins, and adjustments to the towers, all of which is estimated to be completed by 2024. These renovations are estimated to cost Rs 450 million ($5.4 million USD).
  • New Zealand considers cable car alternatives for transit solutions. The Urban Transport Solutions Report, released by Doppelmayr, proposes 10 cable car routes throughout Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch. The next phase for Doppelmayr is to find the best planning and transport agencies to partner with. The article goes into more detail on some of the specific alignments that are considered. It is also noted that there were 20 total alignments studied, with only half released in the report.


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27
Nov

2023

Weekly Roundup: Italian Gondola to Transport Produce, Not People, in the Works

Post by Gondola Project

Labeled as the first system of its kind, this upcoming Italian project has been designed to transport Melinda-branded apples from thei rwarehouse in the Predaia commune to a storage center in the nearby Dolomite mountain range. Image credits to Philip Bouchard (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 DEED), via Flickr.
  • Wyler Aerial Tramway will soon be up and running again in El Paso, TX. TPWD is partnering with Camino Real Regional Mobility Authority to get the tramway back into commission. The system originally ran as a popular attraction for tourists, ferrying visitors to the top of Ranger Peak to enjoy the spanning views. The tramway operated as a Texas State Park for 17 years, but was suddenly shut down due to safety concerns. Phase One of the park’s refurbishment is estimated to take two years to complete and includes rebuilding the roadway around the tramway park. Phase Two of the park’s revamping would include another tramway for passengers in addition to the existing system. 
  • A cable car is coming to Dubai Mountain Peak in Hatta, United Arab Emirates. The Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) is building a gondola system that will pass over the Hatta Dam Lake and the Upper Dam Lake before reaching the summit of Um Al Nesoor, the highest natural summit in Dubai. The system will be 5.4 kilometers long and was shown off alongside a new hydroelectric power plant.
  • An exciting proposal – cable cars to be used in an adapted system to transport Italian apples. The system would be the first of its kind anywhere in the world and would transport Melinda apples from its packhouse up 1,300 meters to a storage facility in a close-by mountain. The system would reduce the company’s emissions significantly by saving around 6,000 truck journeys. The system will travel at 5 meters per second and have a capacity of 460 containers (150 tons of apples) per hour. More than €4 million will be paid for by the government.  


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17
Nov

2023

Weekly Roundup: Prague’s Famous Funicular to See Exciting New Upgrades

Post by Gondola Project

After nearly ninety years of use, the current cabins of the Prague railway will be overhauled and updated with ‘flirty’ new features. The most interesting of these updates are red lights that will ‘wink’ when the cabins pass each other on lines, almost as if they are blushing at one another. Image credits to David McKelvey, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0, via Flickr.


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10
Nov

2023

Weekly Roundup: Celebrate Christmas and Spread Holiday Cheer with the Singapore Cable Car

Post by Gondola Project

In celebration of the holiday season and its upcoming 50th anniversary, the Singapore Cable Car has bedecked its cabins with festive, Pokémon-inspired designs, complete with wreaths and mistletoe. Image credits to Choo Yut Shing, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0, via Flickr.


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03
Nov

2023

Weekly Roundup: Napa Valley’s Most Famous Winery and Gondola Reopen

Post by Gondola Project

The year 2020 was not kind to the Sterling Winery, who saw its doors closed by COVID-19 and its property ravaged by the destructive Glass Fire. But following years of rejuvenation and rebuilding, the famous Napa Valley winery and its popular gondola have reopened to the public. Photo credits to Jim G, CC BY 2.0 DEED, via Flickr.
  • Simcoe Street Rapid Transit explores the possibility of gondolas for Simcoe Street in Oshawa. The municipality is also exploring light rail and bus options alongside a gondola or suspended monorail. The gondola solution would have 16 stops with 25-passenger cabins which could provide a capacity of 1,300-1,600 passengers per hour per direction; it is estimated to cost between $600 million and $1 billion. The monorail would have 17 stops, 200 passenger vehicles,  and by 2051 the system could carry 1,100 – 1,300 passengers per hour per direction; the system would cost $7 – $8 billion.
  • Vietnam is leading cable car installations across the country. Cable cars are a fitting solution for Vietnam’s unique terrain, allowing for riders to hop across mountains, jungles, and islands. Vietnam has installed 26 cable car lines over the last couple of decades and is home to 4 of the longest cable cars in the world. Sun World has been a large contributor, with its six systems taking home 9 different Guinness World Records, including longest 3S, tallest cable car tower, and largest cable car cabin. Cable cars create cheaper and less intrusive transportation alternatives to various places around the country, which allow tourists easier access to places of note.
  • Harborplace development may include a gondola alongside its other upgrades. The new gondola concept was included in renderings of the MCB Estates redevelopment release; the new renderings show two towers, one by Harbor East and the other north of Federal Hill Park. MCB commented that they are thinking about the future of Baltimore and how a gondola could make a good attraction and connector.
  • Work has begun on the longest cable car in Uttarakhand, India. The 5.5-kilometer long system will connect Dehradun to Mussoorie in a 15 minute ride, aiming to cut down the commute time and reduce traffic congestion in the area. The system will have 10-passenger cabins and a capacity of 1,300 passengers per hour per direction. POMA SAS France and SRM Engineering LLP have begun their work and plan to open in September 2026.
  • The Sterling Winery Gondola has reopens following the 2020 Glass Fire and refurbishment. The monocable detachable system (MDG) is now once again open to the public. The cabins provide 360-degree panoramic views of the valley on the journey up to the reopened hilltop winery. The new system replaced the old 1973 system with 8-passenger cabins and a new alignment to bring guests up the hill. SCJ Alliance, the parent company of the Gondola Project, had been retained to provide gondola expertise for this project. See a related weekly roundup here.


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20
Oct

2023

Weekly Roundup: New Hampshire’s Iconic Ketchup-and-Mustard Tramway to be Updated

Post by Gondola Project

The tram began service originally in the late 1930s before seeing an update in 1980; now, a second major update is planned for the historic tramway, and officials promise that they will adhere to tradition and preserve the fan favorite red and yellow cabins, dubbed Ketchup and Mustard. Image credit to Dennis Jarvis, CC BY-SA 2.0 DEED, via Flickr.
  • Portland Aerial Tramway to perform annual evacuation exercises. The evacuation exercise will be led by Portland Fire & Rescue Technical Rescue Team, where Doppelmayr employees will be lowered to the top floor of the OHSU Casey Eye Institute’s parking garage. All tram operating staff will be participating to allow crews to practice an aerial rescue in the situation where a cabin may be stopped for an extended period. The tramway will be stopped during the training exercise and will resume use afterwards.
  • The longest monocable detachable gondola in the world will be constructed in Roseau, Dominica. The new monocable detachable gondola (MDG) will connect the capital city to the world’s second largest boiling lake with a 20-minute gondola ride. Doppelmayr and ABL Holdings are working together to bring the idea to reality. Outdoor Engineers’ feasibility report shows that the project could be completed within 2 years. The study also revealed that the project would, short-term, increase employment opportunities during the construction phase and, long-term, increase tourism for the area.
  • Cannon Mountain aerial tramway to be upgraded at New Hampshire’s Franconia Notch State Park. The aerial tram‘s route will not change, but the lift will be upgraded with new, modernized cabins. The system takes an 8 minute ride up to Canon’s 4,090-foot summit. The project bid will be advertised at the end of October, and the bid process is expected to be complete by late spring of 2024. The project was originally estimated to cost $25 million to replace the system; however, due to rigorous maintenance on the lift, some of the parts of the existing lift can be reused, dropping the estimated cost down to $18 million. 


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13
Oct

2023

Weekly Roundup: World’s Longest Cable Car Under Construction in Nepal

Post by Gondola Project

The nearly 85 kilometer system will better connect the sacred Muktinath Temple with the rest of Nepal’s Gandaki province, allowing for tourists and religious pilgrims alike to more easily visit the temple and bypass the arduous terrain. Images credits to Ironicfreak, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons.
  • Cable car in Lipova, Romania put on hold due to zoning appeals. The cable car is planned to be 1,700 meters long and would connect Brno Exhibition Centre to Bohunice campus and hospital. The system will have a capacity of 2,000 passengers per hour and is estimated to cost about CZK 950 million ($41 Million USD). The project kicked off in 2020 by Brno Transport Company (DPMB) and is currently facing a delay due to appeals against the joint construction and zoning management from homeowners living along the edge of where the cable car would run.
  • World’s longest Cable Car project in progress in Nepal for an estimated $500 million. K&R Rail Engineering Limited has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the project. The 84.32-kilometer system is expected to have a total of 20 stations, with nine of those stations being for mandatory loading and unloading, eight for optional loading and unloading, and another three identified as technical stations. The purpose of the cable car is to improve the travel for both tourists and devotees up to Muktinath Temple, which sits at an altitude of 3,700 meters.
  • Kartepe Cable Car in Turkey continues construction. The cable car is a 4,695-meter long monocable detachable gondola (MDG) system with a capacity of 500 people per hour. The 10-passenger cabins will take 14 minutes to travel to the upper station.  The system is within a 200 thousand square meter area that is being developed with picnic zones, caravan camping, a nature school, and other attractions. Amongst these will be a restaurant, which is currently about 40% complete.
  • Silver Star Mountain Resort doubles Summit Express gondola capacity in Canada. The resort will be adding 21 more 8-passenger cabins to the system to increase the capacity from 1,200 to 2,400 passengers per hour. Along with increases in the gondola capacity, Silver Star will also install new Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) gates which will scan tickets without the rider needing to take the ticket out of their pocket.


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