The Schöckl cable car transports around 200,000 people every year to the 1445 m high Graz local mountain, the Schlossbergbahn used more than 500,000 passengers from all over the world before Corona. These figures show that security in the area of infrastructure and technology for more than 700,000 customers a year should not be an empty promise and has absolute priority on the part of the legislator and those responsible.
The statutory inspection of the Schöckl cable car is carried out twice a year. Freizeit Graz Managing Director Michael Krainer: “While the cable car is taking a break, our team checks the technology, cleans and replaces parts. Even outside of the inspections, the track is checked every day and inspection runs are carried out before and after day-to-day operations. In addition, the supports and screws of the cable car are inspected every month”.
Extensive exchange of control parts: Schöckl cable car discontinued until the beginning of May
The current cable car was opened in 1995 and can carry up to 1000 people per hour. The 2,087 meter stretch from the valley station to the mountain station can be covered in around seven minutes by cable car. Holding Graz board member Mark Perz: “In recent years, the cable car has increasingly become a magnet for day trippers. In order to bring the system up to date with the latest technology, certain parts of the electronics have to be replaced. Our team will therefore renew the cable car's electronic control system as part of the annual spring inspection from January 31, 2022, depending on the weather. The built-in electrical components such as DC motors, power converters, the controls for the main and auxiliary operations, and all switching and monitoring devices are exchanged. Michael Krainer adds: “Some of these components have withstood the test for more than 25 years. However, the frequency of failures has increased in recent years and there are no longer any spare parts for a large number of the components used at the time. At the same time, the usual – legally required – revision work is carried out. The amount of work is disproportionately higher compared to the usual maintenance and inspection activities, so that the work lasts until May".
In the longer term, this year's work will bring an advantage: "In the future, only one main inspection per year will be necessary," says Krainer.
Schlossbergbahn: Rehabilitation of the Schlossbergbahn route is overdue
There is also urgent work to be done on the Schlossbergbahn, which has been popular since 1894. Krainer: "Due to the loads and weather influences, we have to recoat the surface of the Schlossbergbahn substructure after decades. After the old coating has been removed, the damaged concrete areas are repaired using renovation mortar. This is followed by a base coat on which a multi-layer plastic seal is applied".
Due to the local conditions with the existing steep terrain, the work requires strict safeguards and thus a higher workload. The route rehabilitation will begin on January 31, 2022 and will probably last until mid-June 2022, depending on the weather. closed. The Schloßberg lift will be available while the route is being renovated. Furthermore, a shuttle service between the Schloßberg lift mountain station and the Schlossberg restaurant will be set up for people with restricted mobility.