24 March 2003 until end of May 2003, there is
a new temporary public funicular in Switzerland.
is located at Amsteg in the canton of Uri, in
the central Switzerland.
From Amsteg (altitude 526m), a twisting road leads
the cars and buses to the small village of Bristen
(770m) and the Maderanertal valley. At St. Anton,
rocks was threatening to collapse over the road.
The Uri cantonal authorities and the, Amsteg-Bristen-Silenen
district decided to blow up the rocks.
problem was that such an explosion requires to
close the road during more than two months. The
Bristenstrasse road is the only way to reach Bristen
and it is impossible to isolate the village during
such a long period.
was another solution !
meters from the road is the KWA Kraftwerk Amsteg
hydroelectric power station with the old pressure
pipelines which was leading the water to the turbines
(The KWA power station belongs to the Federal
Railways (SBB), the electricity is used to supply
the Zürich-Milano Gotthard line). All along
the pipelines was a cable inclined plane which
was built in 1918 with the power station.
local authorities had the idea to use this funicular
to transport persons and goods from Amsteg to
problem was that the pipelines and the funicular
were out of service since 1998. In 1998 the KWA
power station was modified to be underground,
under the mountain, with new underground pipelines.
use the old funicular as a public transportation,
it was necessary to entirely restore the cable
inclined plane, among others modifications : a
new car with, new security systems, engine restoration,
entire restoration of the old funicular cost 300.000
Swiss Francs which will be paid by the Uri canton
and the Amsteg-Bristen-Silenen district.
The funicular is free, no fare to use it!
funicular will be stopped when the Bristenstrasse
road will be reopened; this is planned for end
of May 2003.