Cars. Buses. Shuttles. Bicyclists. Soaring pedestrian bridge. Streetcar. Shipyard. Cycle track. Aerial tramway.
That’s what you’ll find at the most transportation-diverse intersection in the country located in Portland, Ore. In 2015, SCJ was selected to be the Independent Ropeway Engineer for The Tram, one of the only aerial commuter trams in the nation.
Our responsibilities included performing unannounced (SURPRISE!) and announced inspections to ensure the system is being operated and maintained properly. That way the City could count on The Tram’s reliability as a vital piece of their transportation network.
The two tram cabins, named Jean and Walt, travel 22 mph and hold up to 79 passengers. During each four-minute ride, the trams travel 3,300 feet from the South Waterfront Neighborhood to an upper terminal with stunning views.
That upper terminal serves as a critical transportation connection to the Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) where as many 20,000 people visit every day. It also connects passengers to two other hospitals, a residential neighborhood and a network of nature trails.
It was an exciting opportunity to be able to work with the City of Portland, OHSU and Doppelmayr on this high profile urban tramway system. Seeing how successful this system has been in a transit-centric city like Portland makes it easy to appreciate how ropeways can provide safe, reliable, fun transportation in an urban environment.