Are gondolas the next big thing in urban transport?
5:21 AM EDT, Fri September 13, 2013
Urban hang out —
A ropeway hangs above the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro. The hanging pods have found a home in many South American cities in recent years. The latest is currently being designed and built in Bolivia's administrative capital, La Paz. (Picture courtesy of Marcelo Freire)
Courtesy Marcelo Freire
Oversubscribed roads —
Traffic in La Paz often comes to a standstill meaning journeys only a few kilometers long can take up to an hour or more.
AIZAR RALDES/AFP/GETTY IMAGES/FILE
Hillside barrios —
The steep hills and populous neighborhoods that surround La Paz make constructing wide roads or metro systems difficult. The ropeway system will allow travelers to glide down the city's steep slopes in a fraction of the time it would take to make the same journey by road.
ALI BURAFI/AFP/GETTY IMAGES/FILE
Medellin's Metrocable —
Medellin is regarded as the first city to introduce an urban gondola system. The Colombian city constructed its first Metrocable line in 2004.
Award-winning concept —
The Medellin Metrocable is widely considered to have increased mobility for some if its poorest citizens and was cited as a major reason behind the awarding of the 'Most Innovative City' title from the Urban Land Institute in early 2013. (Picture courtesy of Daniel Chou)