Lauterbrunnen Switzerland - The Parliament of Canton Bern wants to replace the existing funicular between Lauterbrunnen and Grütschalp with an aerial cableway at the same location.
Parliament has authorized the Directorate of Building, Transport, and Energy to submit a resolution on this decision.
A parliamentary decision on the matter is expected to be taken in autumn 2005.
Parliament examined various options on the replacement of the existing funicular between Lauterbrunnen and Grütschalp, before deciding that construction of an aerial cableway in the same place would be the best solution.
In comparison to a funicular, an aerial cableway is simpler to construct in building technology terms and more economical to maintain.
The Stechelberg-Mürren-Schilthorn Aerial Cableway, the funicular from Lauterbrunnen to Grütschalp, and its connecting small-gauge railway from Grütschalp to Mürren provide public transport services to the traffic-free mountain village of Mürren.
Replacement of the existing funicular is necessary because the slope is unstable.
Since it was laid, the middle section of track has moved two and a half metres sideways and three metres towards the valley.
In 1999 the funicular had to be temporarily switched off because of an exceptionally large amount of slope movement.
Serious damage occurred again last winter.
The Swiss Federal Office for Transport has thus definitely limited operating permission to 31 Jul 2006.
An aerial cableway will span the unstable area and the supporting pylons and cable will have a far greater tolerance to slope slip.