Furniculaire top station

Funiculaire arriving at the top station

Last week, I got the opportunity to visit Switzerland. Switzerland is probably the country with the best public transport in the world. It is affordable and highly attractive at the same time. The high standards are achieved by a combination of systems, buses, trolley buses, trams, trains and different kinds of cable cars.

Entrance to the Funiculaire at the station in the valley

Entrance to the Funiculaire at the station in the valley

After having taken the train from the airport in Zurich (Kloten) to the Central station in Fribourg,  we went on one of the bus routes in the steep hills of the city. It is a really challenging area in the winter. So far all good. However, next we came to the “Funiculaire”. It is unique in many ways.

Petroleum lamp

Every detail is still maintained the petroleum lamp for example is still using petroleum kerosene to light up the cabin.

The propulsion is achieved by balancing the weight of the two cabins. Waste water is filled into a tank at the upper cabin. The additional weight is used to accelerate the trains both the one going up and the one going down. They are connected by a cable. The most unique thing about the Funiculaire in Fribourg is that it is still 100% in its original shape. Even if this might be considered to be more culture than public transports it a highly appreciated part of the public transport system.



About volvobuses

Adjunct Professor of Catalysis at Chalmers University of Technology. Lives in Gothenburg, Sweden, with my wife and three daughters born in 1991, 1994 and 1997. Is a passionate runner.
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2 Responses to Funiculaire

  1. Well, the interesting thing is if the affordable public transport is maintained by the state. If so, then it turns out to be less attractive…

    • volvobuses says:

      Sorry for the late response.
      I cant quite follow the reasoning.
      I general, public money should be used to support the interest of the public.
      Afordability should be in the interest of the public independently of how the cost is distributed.
      Br. Edward

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