On December 15, Swiss President Doris Leuthard formally cut the ribbon to open the world's steepest funicular railway line, in the Alpine village of Stoos. The President set aside her fear of heights, taking the maiden voyage along with other distinguished passengers.
"After 14 years of planning and building, everyone is very proud of this train," said Ivan Steiner, spokesman for Switzerland's national railway.
#Stoosbahn — Experience the world’s steepest funicular railway in a simulator at @Verkehrshaus in Lucerne or enjoy a ride in the original Stoosbahn opening this Sunday, 17 December 2017. https://t.co/e0XD3aELzA pic.twitter.com/Aya3MikrSA— Lucerne Tourism (@I_love_Lucerne) 14 декабря 2017 г.
The train, two lines of cylindrical carriages, resemble beer barrels. The length of the cableway is 1,720 m, climbing or descending 743 metres along gradients as steep as 110% (47.7º), speed — 10 m/sec. The new funicular railway cost the country €44.6 million.
It will run from the valley station near Schwyz into the mountain village of Stoos, population 100, about 30 miles (50km) south of Zurich.
Passengers, who were invited to take the first ride, said the ride was "incredibly steep", "just amazing", and that they felt like they were "in an elevator." The Stoosbahn will enter public service on Sunday.