Tags: potomac river | gondolas | aerial | georgetown

Potomac River Gondolas Plan Could Lift Off, Study Finds

Image: Potomac River Gondolas Plan Could Lift Off, Study Finds

Potomoc River communities are considering a plan to build aerial gondolas to connect to one another. (Zts/Dreamstime.com)

By    |   Friday, 04 Nov 2016 07:18 PM

Building aerial gondolas, a la ski resorts, along the Potomac River to connect commuters and other passengers from Georgetown to Virginia is being given serious consideration by Washington, D.C.-area communities.

Using gondolas, or aerial trams, as a transit system could help at least 6,500 commuters a day get to work, school, or home faster and easier, according to a feasibility study reported in The Washington Post.

Rosslyn Business Improvement District President Mary-Claire Burick said, “When you’re not immersed in this technology, a gondola can sound sort of fanciful and not like a real technological possibility. But it really does bear consideration.”

The study was conducted with funding from the cities of Rosslyn and Georgetown, Georgetown University, and others who would benefit from the new form of transportation.

The Georgetown Business Improvement District spearheaded the efforts, according to The Washington Post.

The aerial gondolas were first pitched in 2014 as part of the Georgetown 2028 strategic plan. Georgetown has no metro station and has faced competition from other neighborhoods for both employment and food and entertainment options.

Supporters of the idea claim it would be far easier to build gondolas than a metro station, which couldn’t open until about 2040 even if construction started immediately.

Gondolas could cross over the Potomac River in about 4 minutes, the feasibility study concluded. It would cost $80 million to $90 million to build the system. An environmental impact study still has to be completed, and approvals would probably take three to four more years before construction could begin.

A final decision has not been made about whether to move forward with the project.

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Building aerial gondolas, a la ski resorts, along the Potomac River to connect commuters and other passengers from Georgetown to Virginia is being given serious consideration by Washington, D.C.-area communities.
potomac river, gondolas, aerial, georgetown
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2016-18-04
Friday, 04 Nov 2016 07:18 PM
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