Matheran is the only automobile-free hill station in Asia and has been declared as an eco-sensitive area too. It is also the smallest hill station in India and is located on the Western Ghats range at an elevation of around 800 meters (2625 ft) above sea level due to which it enjoys a cooler and less humid climate which makes it popular during the summer months. Matheran is very popular and famous for its beautiful points which provide a 360 degree view of the surrounding area and also the Neral town.
It is located around 90 kms from Mumbai and 120 Kms from Pune. Matheran’s proximity to many metropolitan cities makes it a popular weekend getaway for urban residents. There is no vehicular traffic allowed leaving tourists with limited means of transportation to access to Matheran Hills. The tourists can either travel through road up to Dasturi through vehicles and can continue onward journey of 3 Kms to the hills either by foot or horseback or man pulled cart. The other alternative is mini train from Neral / Dasturi to Matheran, which is having limited capacity and never runs during the monsoon season for about 4 - 5 months.
Central Railway operates Mini Train service between Neral and Matheran which is operated for eight odd months and remains close in Monsoon season. The Central Railway also runs a shuttle service between Matheran – Aman lodge (Dasturi) for the tourists commuting by their own vehicles or local taxi and this service is operational throughout the year.
The total length of the proposed system would be about 4.8 Kms. The Lower Terminal Station (LTP) is proposed at Bhutivali Village, Intermdiate Terminal Station (ITP) at Garbet Village and the Upper Terminal Station (UTP) is proposed near Lords Garden Matheran (Madhavji Point). The system involves development of 3 stations and 18 ropeway towers along the alignment.
Rohtang Pass is situated at an altitude of 13,050 feet above sea level and 51 kms from Manali and also is the highest point on the Manali-Keylong Road. Rohtang Pass acts as a gateway to Lahaul Spiti, Pangi and Leh valley just as Zojila Pass is a gateway to Ladakh. Rohtang Pass is very much frequented during summers for skiing activities. Rohtang Pass attracts more than 2 million tourists every year and can be accessed by taking a taxi from Manali. The summer season is the peak time and attracts around average of 10,000 tourists every day. The road between Manali and Rohtang is very small in width and mostly gets heavily congested which leads to 5-6 hours of travel time and thus the development of passenger ropeway system as an alternate mode of transport has been recommended.
The consortium of TRIL Urban Transport Private Limited and APHL would develop the ropeway project on BOT mode for a concession period of 40 Years. The total length of the proposed system would be about 8.6 kms. The Lower Terminal Station (LTP) is proposed at Palchan, two intermediate stations are proposed at Marhi and Gulaba and the Upper Terminal Station (UTP) at Rohtang Pass. The system involves development of 4 stations and 60 ropeway towers along the alignment.
Tata Realty and Infrastructure received the Letter of Award for the Dharamshala Mc Leodgunj Ropeway Project. This is a 2 Km monocable detachable ropeway project with a capacity to carry 1000 passengers per hour per direction. This ropeway will connect Dharamshala to Mc Leodganj and top station will be in front of Dalai Lama Temple. The ropeway will reduce 9km road travel saving 40 % travel time and will be eco-friendly mode. This project is awarded in PPP mode with Concession period for 40 Years from Himachal Pradesh Government. The Project is planned to be operational by Year 2018.
Monocable Detachable Ropeway system is an effective Urban Transport Technology proven in Western countries of Europe, USA and Canada. TRIL is planning to undertake projects with this technology at iconic Tourist locations and Urban Areas.
The project is in joint venture with A. Power Himalayas.