Cesar Dockweiler is the General Manager for Mi Teleferico, the growing state-owned gondola network in Bolivia’s capitol city. This week, he’s in Switzerland visiting suppliers working on the Blue and White lines for La Paz, which are about 75 percent complete. Throughout the trip, Mr. Dockweiler has been tweeting updates from CWA and Fatzer to his more than 3,000 followers.
Pictures from CWA show how workers still make gondola cabins one at a time and largely by hand. Because the company builds on demand, even a lift with just four cabins can have its own custom design.
Omega cabins start as just frames and are painted before the windows/doors, floor and roof are installed. In these pictures, the white line’s cabins are being assembled and painted on the factory floor while the blue line’s are complete and wrapped for shipment to South America.
Mi Teleferico’s newest cabins will have roof-mounted solar panels to charge batteries that support Wi-Fi, lights, surveillance cameras and public address systems which are all installed in the ceilings.
La Paz has become such an important customer for CWA that the company apparently flies the Bolivian flag alongside the Swiss one at its Olten factory. The twin cities of La Paz and El Alto have ordered 1,450 CWA Omega IV-1o’s to date. You can follow Cesar Dockweiler on Twitter for more updates from the man in charge of the world’s largest gondola network.