A first-of-its-kind gondola is coming to the renowned ski area of Flims Laax Falera. The new on-demand gondola is currently under construction, and this new concept will be a huge leap in technology that could be a major refresher for the lift industry.
Named the FlemXpress, this on-demand gondola will create a seamless experience for users. Passengers will select their desired destination while in their departure station. A destination-labeled 10-passenger gondola cabin will pause for easy loading, and passengers are whisked away to their desired location with no stops in between. Simple enough!
Not only is this gondola exceptionally user-focused, it is also designed to maximize sustainability. Thanks to this on-demand design, unoccupied cabins will remain in the station and will therefore consume less energy. The new gondola will use existing structures where possible, and new structures will seamlessly integrate into the terrain to minimize environmental impacts. The FlemXpress will use local materials wherever possible, including concrete from a local factory and wood from a nearby forest.
Construction of this gondola will occur in two stages. The Flims-Foppa-Startgels portion is scheduled to open to skiers in December of this year. The remaining Startgels-Segnes-Nagens Sura-Cassons portion will open in December of 2024 and will connect to the previously completed line. The old chairlifts in this area will be dismantled.
For more information, check out the FlemXpress website for an incredibly detailed explanation of the gondola’s features and sustainability efforts (yes, it’s in English). For an even more in-depth look at the construction, the FlemXpress has a video construction diary that adds new updates as development progresses (just make sure to turn on the captioning). Here’s the first video in the series, which covers the route of the new gondola: