Between April and October 2023, the cable car will connect the two event sites at Spinelli and Luisenpark, as “Mannheimer Morgen” newspaper reports. According to National Garden Show Company Director Michael Schnellbach, two major manufacturers have expressed an interest in construction of the cable car.
The Europe-wide call for tenders took place on 15th January 2020 and the company hopes to choose a supplier no later than in September. The cable car is intended to transport up to 2,800 people per hour and direction over a route approximately 2.1 kilometres long, with a travel time of around eight minutes.
According to projections, this will require 45 to 50 gondolas for ten to twelve people, as newspaper “Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung” reports. The latest plans indicate that the system will cost around seven million euros. According to Schnellbach, it will be possible to provide more accurate figures only in two years’ time, during the contracting process.
Moreover, the construction industry is subject to price fluctuations. Information from the BUGA boss indicates that the construction time will be around one year.
Cable car only temporary
However, the cable will run only during the six months of BUGA 2023 – no longer. “Charming and attractive” were Schnellbach’s words to describe the idea of running the cable car across the Neckar river even after the great event.
Nonetheless, investigations have shown that operation would be uneconomical and that too few people would be willing to pay for it. Experts also deemed connection to the local transport network not to be sensible from an economic perspective.
Operator model planned
Buga GmbH does not want to buy the cable car; rather, it is considering a so- called operator model. For example, the system could be operated by a local company, with the cable car manufacturer training the staff and undertaking maintenance.
Some time ago, considerations of using autonomously driven electric buses for the shuttle service were rejected. With a total of over 90 hectares, BUGA 2023 will be one of the largest garden shows. “There is nobody in the world who can run that distance in one day,” Schnellbach concludes. ts