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Installing Cable Car Systems in Cities to Reduce Congestion

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Posted on Thu, 03 January 2013 22:03 | 2

As the world population grows, and economies expand, then the population in cities increases; this leads to more vehicles on the road, and in turn congestion.

One way in which congestion can be reduced, or at least avoided by those not wishing to waste hours in traffic, is to build subways; however subways are expensive to develop.

A surprisingly cheap alternative, and one that is being currently proposed by Michael McDaniel, a designer at Frog Design, is the use of cable cars.

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His idea, known as “The Wire” will see a grid of mass transit cable cars installed throughout Austin, Texas, in an attempt to reduce congestion and other transportation problems.

AutoblogGreen wrote a couple of days ago about the advantages of installing a cable car system for public transport use in large cities, noting that, “gondolas would be cheaper than subways (by a long shot – subways can cost up to $400 million per mile and The Wire could be implemented for around $3 million a mile) and they can be used in tight, congested areas. A gondola system – easy (relatively) to install and expand – could also move up to 10,000 people an hour, which could replace 100 bus trips or 2,000 car rides.”

By. Joao Peixe of Oilprice.com


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  • Jack Parsons on January 06 2013 said:
    A cable break would be a very very bad thing. San Fran's ground-based cables break occasionally. The motor at the end of the track pulls the underground leg of the cable, and the cars are pulled by the return leg. The tension is on the underground leg. When it breaks, the cars slide and the operators hits the brakes.

    A cable snap of that magnitude in an underground echo chamber is one hell of a noise. Apparently you can hear it blocks away.
  • Dennis Dickens on January 04 2013 said:
    It might help to clarify things, given that San Francisco has a ground based cable car system and that 'gondola' combined with cable car seems to imply an aerial tramway system as found in New York City and a number of ski areas and amusement parks.

    Aerial tramway type cable cars can use space above the roadway, making them cheaper to build. You could even have multiple layers if the traffic density requires it. Plus it would be possible to take short cuts across parks, lakes, low density residential areas and the like.