The Grünberg-Seilbahn is a cable car that runs up Gmunden’s local mountain, the Grünberg. It was built in 1957 and since then has carried over six million passengers. The old bicable gondola lift, which was in operation until 2010, was dismantled in 2013 and in 2014 a new aerial tramway was opened.
The system is operated by Traunsee Touristik GmbH, a subsidiary of OÖ Seilbahnholding, which in turn is a holding company of OÖ Landesholding, Upper Austria’s investment management association.
On 18 May 2013, state governer Josef Pühringer broke the ground for the new large cabin aerial tramway on the Grünberg. The project cost around EUR 10 million and was paid for by Upper Austria’s OÖ Seilbahnholding.
On 14 June 2014 the new aerial tramway was opened. The accessible cable car largely uses the route of the dismantled gondola lift.
Due to the confined space at the base station, the centre lines of the two cableways do not run parallel, but are spaced just 90cm apart within the station itself, in order to reduce the necessary width of the building. At the first support the track width is 10.25m to allow enough distance for the cars to pass each other at the halfway point.
Automatic sliding platforms have been installed in the base station to bridge the gap between the car door and the fixed platform, which varies depending on whether a car comes in on the left or right cable. The base station itself had to be erected on a drilled shaft foundation of 35 shafts up to 17m deep in order to create a firm base to withstand the forces.
The cableway’s four carrier cables are not tensioned using tension weights, rather they are anchored firmly to cable posts at the top and base stations. The haulage cable is a continuous loop to which the car drives are fixed with cable clamps. This eliminates the need for on-board brakes.
The cableway can be operated at a lower speed of 5.5-7 m/s without conductors to save on personnel. In this case, only the two stations are staffed. The maximum speed when travelling over supports is 8 m/s. If conductors are on board, the system can be operated at 10 m/s.
The cabins can accommodate 45 passengers when operating normally without a conductor. When there are large numbers of visitors, 60 passengers can be transported, along with the (then obligatory) conductor. The cars have flexible seating arrangements, with 24 seats that can be set up using a quick-change system. For transporting long loads, such as hang-gliders, up the mountain special load openings are available at the rear of the cars.
|Type||bicable gondola, without on-board breaks|
|Vehicles||two large cabines each with 60 people capacity (manufacturer Carvatech, Oberweis (Laakirchen))|
|Cable length||2025 meters|
|Height valley station||436 above sea level|
|Height mountain station||987 above sea level|
|Altitude difference||551 meters|
|Average gradient||28,26 %|
|Largest incline||57,06 %|
|Longest span field||1440 meters (between valley station and first strut)|
|Suspension rope||46 mm diameter, locked coil ropes (Fa. Teufelberger, Wels)|
|Towing rope||28 mm diameter as endlsee rope loop (Fa. Teufelberger, Wels)|
|Drive||electric motor with 350 kW power in the mountain station|
|Speed||max. 10 m/s conducted; 7,0 m/s without conductor; 5,5 m/s in off-peak periods|
|Transport service each direction||618 pers./h|
Old cable car
The Grünberg-Seilbahn, which was in operation from 1957 to 2010, was a bicable lift based on the Wallmannsberg system, erected by VÖEST. Construction of the cable car began in 1956 and the grand opening took place on 14. September 1957. The drive system was located in the top station, and the cable anchors for the hauling and carrier cables with the tension weights were located in the valley station.
At 1396m, the length of the first stretch from the base station to the first support was unusual at the time. In total the cableway had three supports. In 1973 eight further gondolas from the same system were added to the initial 18. These were purchased from the Stubnerkogelbahn in Bad Gastein, in order to increase the passenger capacity from 180 persons per hour and direction to 300 persons per hour, as the capacity limits had been reached.
In 2000 and 2001 the equipment underwent an extensive overhaul and partial renovation. In the process the carrier cables, drive system, transmission and electrical equipment were replaced and the gondolas and their drives were refurbished – the gondolas by Carvatech and the drives by Garaventa. It was necessary to lay new carrier cables, since the cable reserve, a non-tensioned reserve excess of cable in the top station, had been used up through regular, essential shifting of the carrier cables.
Although a concession in cable car law was in place until 2017, the system ran for the last time on the 2010 national holiday as it had reached the end of its life.
The very last public ride was auctioned on eBay for charitable causes.
In the spring and early summer of 2013 dismantling of the system began. On 15 May 2013, seventeen gondolas were auctioned off at the base station by Dorotheum. After this the dismantling of the station buildings and the supports began. In June 2013 the removal of the old carrier cables was complete. The assistance cables used to help remove the old cables remained in place on the former cable route, fixed to assistance anchors, so that they could be used as pulleys for the new aerial tramway in spring 2014.
|Type||cannot be coupled bicable lift, system Wallmannsberger|
|Gondola||first 18, from 1973 26 pieces for 4 people each (manufacturer Fa. Swoboda (today Carvatech), Oberweis (Laakirchen))|
|Cable length||1962 meters|
|Height valley station||431,7 above sea level|
|Height mountain station||981 above sea level|
|Altitude difference||539,30 meters|
|Average gradient||26,6 %|
|Largest incline||1396 meters (between valley station and first strut)|
|Suspension rope||30 mm diameter, locked coil ropes (Austria Draht, Kindberg)|
|Towing rope||24 mm diameter, strand rope (Fa. Teufelberger, Wels)|
|Drive||Three-phase asynchronous slip ring motor with 78 kW at the beginning, later 120 kW power|
|Emergency drive||orig. a Volkswagen-industrial motor with 44 kW, later hydraulic aggregate with diesel engine, 100 kW|
|Driving speed||orig. 2,5 o. 3 m/s switchable, later 0,1 - 3,3 m/s steplessly|
|Driving time||approx. 11 min. by 3 m/s, approx. 14 min. bei 2,5 m/s|
|Transport service each direction||orig. 170 pers./h, from 1973 300 pers./h|