The Doppelmayr/Garaventa lift company has won the contract to build five major new lifts in a large overhaul of the historic Schilthorn ski area above Mürren in Switzerland at a cost of 45 million Swiss francs.
Work will start on the project, originally dubbed “SCHILTHORN 20XX” in two years time, and will see the company install one of the world’s steepest cable cars as well as four funifor lifts. The project is due to be completed by 2026.
Funifors are a type of lift design that is unique to Doppelmayr/Garaventa and appear similar to cable cars, typically holding up to 60 people in each cabin, but they have a wider space between the supporting cables, and is held up closer to them giving greater stability in strong wind conditions. Thanks to the system’s design the cabins can also operate independently of each other, unlike a traditional cable car.
Referring to the filming of the 007 Film “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” on the Schilthorn in the late 1960s, a Doppelmayr spokesperson said,
“If these had been in place 50 years ago, James Bond would have reached his destination a whole lot faster.”
The project comprises three sections, each with two cabins (Stechelberg-Mürren-Birg-Schilthorn). The independent single-track Funifors in the two upper sections will enable to the operating company to maintain reliable lift operations even in strong winds.
“The concept put forward by Graventa convinced us. As we carry large numbers of tourists up to the Schilthorn in both summer and winter, the high availability and weather resistance were particularly important,” said the director of Schilthornbahn AG, Christoph Egger.