Posts Tagged: Carcas



Second Metrocable in Caracas to Open in Early 2013 – With an Express Line

A fleet of cabins await installation on the Mariche Cable Car. Image via Cuidad CCS.

Anyone who follows this urban cable car trend knows that Caracas and Medellin are the two clear trendsetters in this particular niche. Arguably, Medellin was the more visible of the two, but  Caracas’ second Metrocable system could change that.

Set to open in early 2013, the Mariche Cable Car will be the first system that we’ve encountered the be equipped with both a local line and an express line.

According to Metro de Caracas, the local line will have four stops and be 4.84 km long and require a total trip time of 25 minutes. The express line, meanwhile, will only be a mere 50 meters shorter (4.79 km) but will have a total trip time of 17 minutes. The system, like most Latin American urban gondolas, is built around MDG technology.

Image via Metro de Caracas.

Careful observers will notice a couple of curious things here.

Firstly, while the image above suggests that the express line and the local line intersect at La Dolorita Bloque, that is not, actually the case – at least according to a variety of other sources (like here, here and here for example).

Why exactly that is isn’t yet clear but it may suggest a design technique. Most times, express lines and local lines ply the same route with the express line merely skipping stops. A network design such as above not only reduces travel time but also increases coverage.

The second curiosity lies in the total travel time.

The two lines are essentially the same length and presumably operate at the same speeds. That suggests then, that the 8 minute time differential between the two is due to dwell times and terminal times.

What those dwell and terminal times are, however, isn’t clear. But if past systems are any indication, we can probably expect dwell times of roughly 1-1.5 minutes and terminal times of 2-3 minutes. Should terminal times be included in the 25 minute calculation, the actual travel time the rider would experience would be 25 minutes less terminal times. But again, this is not yet clear.

Despite a lack of clear information, this is a system well worth attention. A configuration like this is quite unique and deserves to be analyzed thoroughly in the near future.

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