GUWAHATI, Aug 24 - India�s longest ropeway over a river, which will connect Guwahati to North Guwahati, was today inaugurated by Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma. The 1.82-km ropeway, for which the administrative sanction was issued in 2006, was scheduled to be commissioned by May, 2011. But it hit a roadblock after the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) refused permission for tilt rectification of a trestle (T2) constructed by another firm.
The ropeway will operate from Kachari Ghat in Panbazaar to the Dol Govinda Temple in North Guwahati.
Overlooking the beautiful Brahmaputra, the ropeway will facilitate passengers to cross the river reducing the travel time drastically (eight minutes). Passengers can also have a glimpse of the Umananda Temple on a small river island, thus giving boost to tourism as well.
The ropeway is a twin-track, single haul, bi-cable double reversible jig-back system with two cabins � each with a capacity of 30 passengers plus one operator. The ropeway capacity is 250 PPH (persons per hour). It has been built at a cost of Rs 56 crore.
While Rites Ltd was the consultant, Samir Damodar Ropeways Pvt Ltd was the contractor. Switzerland�s Garaventa AG did the vetting of designs and safety certificate issuance, besides the carriage and rescue system.
�The ropeway has been built as per state-of-the-art technology following relevant Indian and international standards. The ropeway is a convenient and non-polluting means of transport, as well as a source of environmentally friendly tourism. It is ecologically sustainable as it is run by electric power protecting the beauty of the area, while simultaneously providing passengers with a comfortable and speedy means of travel,� a statement on the occasion said.
�This is one of the most advanced and longest river crossing aerial tramway systems in India,� Sarma said, inaugurating the ropeway.
He informed that the additional arm of Ganeshguri flyover will be opened during Durga Puja, while the new flyover at Super Market is likely to be ready by March-April next year.
�We also plan to inaugurate nine foot-overbridges equipped with escalators on February 1 next year and the new Pandu-Kamakhya Temple road on January 1,� he added.
GDD minister Siddhartha Bhattacharya was also present on the occasion among other dignitaries.