Swiss technology is due to hit new heights on Friday when the world’s steepest funicular line opens at one of its Alpine resorts.
Swiss President Doris Leuthard will officially open the 52 million-Swiss franc ($52.6 million) project. It will run from the valley station near Schwyz into the mountain village of Stoos, about 50km south of Zurich, which lies 1,300 meters above sea level in central Switzerland.
The barrel-shaped carriages adjust their floors so passengers can still stand upright even as they climb towards the Alpine plateau at inclines of up to 110 percent.
The train, which will go into public service on Sunday, has been hailed as a triumph of modern design engineering. It will climb 743 meters over a span of 1,738 meters, at speeds of up 10 meters per second.
The line replaces an older funicular which had been in operation since 1933.“After 14 years of planning and building, everyone is very proud of this train,” said Ivan Steiner, spokesman for the railway.