Canadian Consulting Engineer

Winnipeg dangles idea of cable car for public transit

If a proposal for a cable car in downtown Winnipeg had passed muster at the committee stage, citizens would have ha...

January 17, 2008   Canadian Consulting Engineer

If a proposal for a cable car in downtown Winnipeg had passed muster at the committee stage, citizens would have had the thrill of a cable car ride over the Red River as part of their public transit experience.
The idea had been put forward to have an aerial tramway to carry people between the St. Vital neighbourhood and the University of Manitoba’s Fort Garry campus. The proposal had been suggested after it was decided it would be too expensive to build a pedestrian bridge. However, the cable car option also failed to win approval from the city’s infrastructure committee in early January.
A report had outlined four optional routes for the cable car, which would have travelled 6.5 metres above the water at summer river levels. The longest route proposed would have taken nine minutes to travel, stretching 2.2 kilometres from the St. Vital shopping Centre to the University of Manitoba Law Building. The shortest option was a 300-metre route from the St. Amant Centre on River Road to Robson Hall at the university. It would have taken two minutes.
The longest route would have been a “detached” system whereby the gondola cars can stop without affecting the others on the circuit. It was estimated to cost $8.2 million. The shortest and cheapest route would have been a “pulsed” system where all the cars have to stop together. It was estimated to have cost $3 million.

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