The modernized funicular system in Baku, Azerbaijan was officially opened by President Ilham Aliyev on May 23, in time for the Eurovision Song Contest.
The Baku Funicular has been renovated on several occasions. According to an instruction of President Ilham Aliyev, major repairs and reconstruction of the funicular commenced last year. The new design of the Baku Funicular has been prepared in line with the latest standards. Repair and reconstruction work has been carried out with the highest quality.
The head of state cut the ribbon symbolizing the opening of the Baku Funicular. President Ilham Aliyev and his wife Mehriban Aliyeva examined the Funicular after its major overhaul and reconstruction.
Technical characteristics of Baku Funicular:
- Length of railway track is 455 meters (1,493 ft)
- It consists of a single-track part and a passing place.
- There are two stations; electric and rope drive.
- Two coaches – BF-1 and BF-2 are exploited.
- Its transportation capacity is 2000 per day.
- Maximal speed is 2.5 m/s (8.2 ft/s).
- Interval between departures of coaches is 10 minutes.
- Time of train service between stations is 4 minutes.
- Working time is from 10:00 to 22:00
- Capacity of a coach is 28 people
Baku Funicular has undergone a complete overhaul. Only the curved alignment remains; the haul ropes are held on the track by compression sheaves. Even the old Russian sleepers were replaced with new ones from Switzerland.
Hallmark Swiss and Austrian quality is evident all the way through the installation. Baku Funicular was supplied by Garaventa, the cabins by CWA; the architect and the engineering for the steel-glass structures for the stations as well as the glass elements are from Austria. The time frame for the overhaul was just ten months from signing the contract.
Thanks to the excellent collaboration between Garaventa and the local contractors the project was delivered without a hitch.
Thomas Lorenz ZT GmbH provided not only geometrical calculations, but also developed the static structure and calculated the steel-glass construction, and also provided the complete planning of the steel construction for the project.