The first cable car in Reunion, and in the Indian Ocean, was put into service on Tuesday in Saint-Denis in order to alleviate the frequent and dense traffic jams in this French island with its tormented relief.

Choose the cable car rather than the car

The 2.7 km line will be "the starting point of a modal shift" and will encourage users to agree "to abandon their car for the cable car", hoped MP Philippe Naillet during the inauguration of the project launched in 2015 by the intermunicipal community of northern Reunion.

With this metrocable called "Papang" (Creole name for the Maillard harrier, the only endemic bird of prey in Réunion), the idea is to relieve road traffic congestion by serving a loop between the Chaudron, a district of Saint-Denis with a high density of population, and the Bois de Nèfles, a residential area located halfway up the town.

A 1 euro note

Successive every 34 seconds, the 46 cabins can transport 1,200 people per hour and per direction, assures the Poma company which operates the cable car.

The service will be provided from 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and the ticket will cost 1 euro, the same price as the bus.

Five stations are served, including a high school and the university campus, on a route comprising 270 meters of elevation.

Mixed reviews

On Tuesday, opinions were divided among the public present at the inauguration.

Thus Jean-Raymond Morel, father of a family, felt that "there is far too much wind in Reunion" and said he did not want to "fall with the cabin or break down up there".

A student, on the contrary, felt that the cable car would help to “save time”.

Started in 2019, the project cost 54 million euros, including 16 paid by European funds.

The rest of the envelope was financed in particular by the French Development Agency (12 million) and the Caisse des dépôts et consignations (10 million).

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