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In Tbilisi Georgia there used to be a network of aerial tramways / cable cars which operated in various parts of the city:

Tbilisi cable car from Vake Park to Turtle Lake
Vake Park to Turtle Lake (Thanks to WikiMedia Commons for the photo)

It seems that these would be very nice attractions for the city, providing stunning views and something quite unique. But it's incredibly hard to find much information about them, including their names and when they ceased to operate.

But most of all I want to know if the city is intending to refurbish and reopen them in the near future, especially considering all the other restoration and renovation taking place in the city in recent years.

Tbilisi cable car station, Georgian National Academy of Sciences
Cable car station at Georgian National Academy of Sciences (photo by the OP)

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There are two different ones: One from vake to turtle lake which is operating (at least in summer) and other one from Rustaveli which is closed –  Giorgi Feb 12 '12 at 12:33
    
Actually Giorgi, I found out there were five or six of them! A Georgian friend gave me a list and photos but the info got lost in Facebook's message system. I'll add it in the question when I get it again... –  hippietrail Feb 12 '12 at 13:50
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Yes, here is a small list: forum.ge/?showtopic=34119808&view=findpost&p=19822489 (in georgian) Other posts are about cable cars too. –  Giorgi Feb 12 '12 at 14:59
    
@Giorgi: I got the link with photos of the locations again, but not the list of locations again yet... –  hippietrail Feb 13 '12 at 15:08

2 Answers 2

According to this website they are building a new cable car system which is supposed to be completed in 2012.

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Aha I have seen workers installing what looks like the bases of pylons in the area between Narikala and Kartlis Deda so this page explains that. But if so this is a different route to the existing one I'm asking about... –  hippietrail Feb 11 '12 at 16:50
    
Oh this has been open for a few months now and I rode on it twice. The funicular is also definitely due to reopen as I just learned from a blog post in Georgia: New life in funicular –  hippietrail Nov 2 '12 at 8:40
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Yes, there are plans to reopen at least two of them.

The cable car mentioned in Karlson's answer has been completed and operating for roughly a year now, but is a new route with new stations in new locations that did not previously have any of the older cable cars in Tbilisi.

But I only just discovered today by chance an answer on a Georgian website called Civil.ge, in a section or article titled Tbilisi Ropeways:

A new cable car system, installed by Leitner Ropeways, was opened in Tbilisi. The new ropeway is mainly designed as a tourist attraction, which crosses between Rike Park and Narikala fortress up on the hill overlooking the capital city with 8-passenger gondola lifts allowing visitors to take in views of Old Town. Tbilisi municipality, however, also plans to restore some of the old cable cars and add several new commuter routes to make aerial tramway part of the capital city’s transport infrastructure. There were six ropeways in Tbilisi during the Soviet times with all of them now dysfunctional; most of them ceased operating in 1990s and the last remaining cable car, linking Chavchavadze Avenue and Kus Tba (Turtle Lake) ceased running couple of years ago. In 1990 at least 19 people, including children, died in an accident involving two cable cars on a ropeway route between Rustaveli Avenue and mount Mtatsminda.

The article contains some great photos of several of the old non functioning cable cars as well as photos of the new one.

The two old routes it specifically mentions as slated to re-open are:

  • between the districts of Samgori and Vazisubani
  • between Chavchavadze Avenue to Kus Tba

I have not found any other source to know if these are the only two old routes due to be restored.

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