- Doppelmayr Seilbahnen GmbH
Cities are engines of economic and social development. Yet, in many developing countries, including the emerging economies, challenges arise around the rapid increase of private vehicles, traffic congestion and poorly functioning public transport systems. Urban dwellers, particularly the poor, are facing increasing problems in travelling to work and in accessing health, educational and social services.
The fact that transport related targets are included in eight out of the seventeen proposed Sustainable Development Goals of the Post 2015-Agenda illustrates the cross cutting role that transport has in sustainable development.
The SDGs recognize transport as a stimulator of economic and social development but also associate it with a number of direct and indirect externalities such as traffic congestion, air pollution and road accidents.
The New Urban Agenda states that urban mobility that is strategic and well planned, is crucial in making cities more sustainable. Sustainable Mobility is referred to in the NUA as a key measure to achieve sustainable and equitable cities.
After the Paris Agreements, Post 2015 Agenda as well as Habitat III conference last October, it is very important to utilize these global commitments to facilitate implementation on the local level towards sustainable mobility. A Common Framework on Transport, Climate Change and Sustainable Development needs to be identified, that provides a common narrative for the sector including a set of recommended actions.
That's why it's essential to find new solutions to our current and future transport problems.
In many cases, expanding the existing road network is no longer an option. The problem is the lack of existing transport infrastructure and densely built-up urban areas without any links -or insufficient links- to public transport. Underground rail schemes are often not built because of the high investment costs required. The solution: make use of a whole new level for passenger transport.
Cable cars play an increasing role as urban transport infrastructure: as a practical add-on to complement car, bus and train services. They bridge natural obstacles such as rivers, cope easily with differences in altitude, link densely populated settlements, help to relieve routes with high volumes of traffic, and extend existing transport services.
They can be combined with existing modes of transport to fill a gap in a transport network. A cable car can readily be integrated into the existing urban areas. What's more, it has huge economic and eco-friendly potential, as numerous projects worldwide have demonstrated.