SK (people mover)

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An SK cabin
SK 6000 in the Bund Sightseeing Tunnel, Shanghai, China

The SK is a people mover built by the company Soulé from Bagnères-de-Bigorre. The acronym SK comes from the initials of the production company (Soulé) and of the designer (Kermadec).

The system is based on small cabins which are circulating on rails and are pulled by a cable at a constant speed. This is directly derived from the gondola lift assemblies which are already produced by the Soulé company and which are working in many ski resorts.

A system of holding mechanism allows to reduce the speed or to halt the cabins in the stations. This technique only works on short lines ; its inability to work on long or curved lines with lots of stops is due to risk of losing the cable and lack of stability at normal speed.

Deployed systems include the following:

  • One line of SK is serving the parking lot of the exhibition grounds of Villepinte.
  • One line of SK was built in Noisy-le-Grand but the housing complex it was supposed to serve was never built and therefore the line was cocooned, waiting to be opened in the future.
  • Two lines of SK 6000 were built in Charles de Gaulle Airport. The first line was supposed to be opened on May 1, 1996, but the length of the line (3500 m) created many technical problems making it impossible to open for public service. Line 2 should have opened in 1997, but it was never opened either. The project had a cost of 148 million euros before being abandoned. It was replaced by CDGVAL.
  • The Bund Sightseeing Tunnel, Shanghai, China (opened 2001) uses the SK 6000.


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