The public consultation for the long trailed cable-way link from l'Alpe d'Huez to les Deux Alpes has finally started and will run through to May. Don't make any property investments just yet. This is just the initial planning stages of the project but we do have a few more details. The proposed link will run from the Signal de l'Homme (2176 meters) above Auris to Mont-de-Lans (1307 meters) with 869 meters of drop. A whopping 5km! The journey will take around 15 minutes.
The cable car will use the 3S system. Each gondola will have a capacity of 35 places and the system will be capable of transporting 2000 p/h. Contrary to previous plans the valley town of Le Freney will be overflown. Instead a monopulse cable car will link to Le Freney. This is similar technology to the la Grave lift. Simple and reliable. The uplift from Le Freney to Mont de Lans will have a capacity of 1000 p/h. To get from l'Alpe d'Huez to the start of the link you will need to take the existing AlpAuris and FontFroide and at Mont de Lans the Mont de Lans and Petite Aiguille lifts. Remember this just gets you to the ski resorts. It all sounds like a serious faff to be honest and a serious waste of time. You could probably drive it quicker if you were that keen to ski at les Deux Alpes.
The S3 (tricable) cable car system was developed by the Swiss company Von Roll. Like the DMC system it offers good wind stability (probably a good thing when suspended over a km above a windy alpine valley). Large spans are possible. For example the Hon Thom cableway in Vietnam is 7.9km long. Von Roll is now owned by Doppelmayr who holds the patent on the S3 system so this seems to leave out local champion Poma. The principal disadvantage of the S3 system are very large stations and pylons.
Of course the real reason for the expansion is to build 10,000 extra beds over the next 15 years using an area of 19 hectares spread over the communes concerned by the project. The ground area is estimated at 200,000 square meters for the buildings.
There is also a project to build an lift from Allemond to Oz en Oisans which would be aimed at day trippers and tourists staying in Allemond. Again it is early days. The public consultation is open and will run to June 2019.