How urban gondolas grew from a tourist attraction to a viable transit option

Ever since the Colombian city of Medellín introduced urban gondolas to its public transportation network in 2004, cities from La Paz, Bolivia, to Ankara, Turkey, have used aerial transit systems for more than mere tourism. As of February, Paris is on its way to joining that list.

Southeast of Paris, a newly greenlit gondola will connect the Paris suburb of Créteil with the city’s metro system. First proposed in 2008, the gondola has now cleared its feasibility studies, paving the way for construction to start this year; its completion is expected by 2025.

The $149 million gondola line will be electric-powered and service 11,000 passengers per day, filling a big transportation gap in an area that’s bisected by several highways, a high-speed rail line, and a rail freight depot. As cities continue to look for cheaper, greener ways to move people, this shows yet again that gondolas can become a serious tool in the public transit tool belt.