Venice’s latest attraction is a cable-operated tram system designed to comfortably transport large numbers of visitors to Venice via a direct route while minimizing passenger waiting time and offering an impressive view of the old town. The two totally ecofriendly high-tech trams make the short trip from the nearby man-made island of Tronchetto to Piazzale Roma – final destination and point of departure for the city’s historic center – a fascinating experience for every passenger. At the same time, this rail technology – which has no negative impact on the city’s inhabitants, existing transportation arteries or architecture – is better suited than any other to the grace and elegance of Venice.
The stationary electric drive technology and the systems and tram controls from Siemens are totally automated, ensuring smooth, uniform operation while minimizing energy and maintenance costs. Integrated sensors and video systems monitor passengers, even on the platforms, without creating a hectic atmosphere. The Cable Liner even adapts to peak demand: When the number of passengers increases, the system’s centralized operator shortens downtime between runs. This flexible response enables more trips to be made, thus minimizing waiting time.
Unlike so-called self-propelled units, in which the drive is located in the vehicles, cable-operated systems have the advantage that even in the event of a total power failure the trams are sure to reach their destinations – using a pneumatic drive that operates independently of the electric drive. Another feature that represents a major advantage every day is the system’s extremely quiet operation. With the drives and brakes centrally housed below the main station, the acceleration and braking of the two trams takes place noiselessly via the rotating cable. Underscoring the energy efficiency with which these systems already operate today, up to 40 percent of the electric drive power is recovered during the braking process.
Cable Liner systems have already proven to be safe, economical, environmentally friendly solutions for mass transit at various transportation hot spots around the world. Whether for shuttle service in a city like Las Vegas or at airports such as in Toronto, Mexico City, Doha or Birmingham, Cable Liners are proving ideal wherever large numbers of people must be quickly, safely and cost-effectively moved across short distances. Experts are predicting growing demand for such shuttles on short, high-volume routes in city centers and for feeder lines for subway systems, sports facilities and amusement parks.
By launching the Cable Liner, Venice is aiming primarily to reduce the heavy volume of traffic and ease the parking problem at Piazzale Roma. That’s why private vehicles and busses will in the future be routed to Tronchetto, a hub which offers large garages and sufficient parking space. Visitors will then transfer to the Cable Liner and be transported directly to Piazzale Roma, a starting point for exploring the old town. There could hardly be a better way to start and end a trip to Venice.