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Giggijochbahn has 134 gondola cabins. They offer 20 centimeters (8 in) more room than similar 10-passenger cabins. Photos: Bergbahnen Sölden

Doppelmayr in Sölden

4500 passengers per hour

“Superseilbahn“ (engl. „Super Cable Transport System“) is what people in Sölden, Austria, call their new Giggijochbahn gondola, and rightly so. The 10-passenger gondola features 4,500 passengers per hour capacity, making it the most powerful installation worldwide. With the first “bone shaped” level walk-in of the industry, with an extraordinary architecture of the station buildings and with a sustainable concept, it has been attributed numerous other superlatives as well.

 

It just takes a look at the line’s technical characteristics to see that the DOPPELMAYR D-Line gondola is playing in the top league: At a speed of 6.5 meters per second, 134 cabins cruise along 2,650 meters (8,694 ft) passing 26 towers, climbing 920 meters (3,018 ft) taking nine minutes.

 

“This is the first time a cable with a diameter of 62 millimeters (2½“) is used. This involves a new size rollers and pulleys, entirely different equipment of the roller batteries on the towers, new cable clamps for the cabins and cable tensioning using metal counterweights”, says Thomas Santer, Giggijochbahn construction and operation manager.

Technical caracteristics

10-passanger gondola Giggijochbahn

 

System capacity                 4500 P/h

Max. Speed                        6,5 m/s

Transit time                       8,87 min

Interval                            8,0 s

Elev. base Station             1.362 m

Elev. upper station            2.283 m

Vertical height                  921 m

Line length                       2.648 m

Average gradient              37,47 %

Max. gradient                   77,97%

Transit time                     8,87 min

Drive location                  upper Station

Cable Tension                 base station

Carriers                          134

Carrier capacity               10 P.

Towers                           26

Motor power Rating operation 1.627 kw

Motor power rating ramo-up   2.0711 kw

Cable                             FATZER 62 mm

Cable length                   5.371 m

Control system               DOPPELMAYR

Architecture                   OBERMOSER ARCH-OMO ZT GMBH    

           

The foil-clad steel structures of the upper station houses the station level and a cabin storage above as well as a sports shop and a ski depot.

LED mountain panorama in the valley

The distinctive, slim base station has its entrance on the south side. On its ground floor is a ticketing hall 13 meters (42 ft) tall with eight ticket windows and advanced, ski resort related infotainment systems. Overhanging above is the loading level that can comfortable be reached using two escalators and two elevators. “It is hidden behind a perforated picture wall showing a panoramic view of the Ötztaler Alpen Mountains”, says architect Johann Obermoser.

 

It is illuminated with LED lights at night. Integrated with the base station are also connections to an indoor parking facility and the ski slopes as well as all logistic installations such as a 150 meter (492 ft) utility tunnel.

The distinctive, slim base station has its entrance on the south side and a ticketing hall 13 meters (42 ft) tall with eight ticket windows.

level walk-in on the mountain

At the upper station, passengers experience a world’s first. For the very first time, DOPPELMAYR has implemented the loading and unloading areas in “bone shape”. Ten cabins line up bumper to bumper to be unloaded simultaneously.

 

The foil-clad steel structure of the upper station includes the station level, a sports shop and a 250 square meter (2,690 sq.ft) ski depot. On the upper level, there is a cabin storage facility. According to Santer, this is also a world’s first: “Never before was there an ascending conveyor for shifting gondola cabins to the upper level with a 45 degree (1:1) grade. There are more than 400 meters (4,300 ft) of conveyor rails under the roof.”

Premiere in Sölden: The so-called “bone shaped” level walk-in guarantees barrier-free access to lifts and slopes. Similar to a subway train, ten cabins line up bumper to bumper to be unloaded simultaneously.

133 black cabins and one in red

The Giggijoch project also excels in terms of sustainability. The base station features a ground water heat pump. On the mountain, an environment-friendly heat recovery system using heat exchangers and two air heat pumps, thermal activation of the building structure and fan heaters was installed. The old Giggijochbahn was not scrapped but “upcycled”. Since 2016, it transports guests in the Hochoetz ski resort, replacing the older Ochsengartenbahn there. As if this was not enough for the “Superseilbahn”, architect Obermoser has added a playful design wink: 133 cabins are black, one is painted Ferrari red. ts