• June 17, 2024

And I’ll Bet You Think Your Commute is Rough


Miners in this remote town of  Chiatura face a worse commute than you do.  Everyday they have to get in a rusted car and be carried to the top of the mountain by old cables.  The cable cars were set up in the 1950s and were used to transport manganese from the mines to various businesses.  That same cable car that was built in the 50s is used for commuters today and the equipment hasn’t been upgraded much.

Miners and residents in the former Soviet town of Chiatura face a death-defying commute every day as they take the cable cars up a huge gorge

The cable cars were built in the 1950s by the Soviet Union to transport workers around the mining town more quickly

I wonder if this is first class or business

The cable cars are still in place more than six decades later and serve as a means of transport to workers and tourists

No, thanks.  I don’t even wear shoes with heels

Prior to the building of the cable cars, miners had to climb that mountain everyday along a makeshift path.  How exhausted would you be once you got to work?  When the manganese mines were running, the tram system carried some four thousand people a day.  Today the mines are closed but there are still people who work and need to commute.

Dubbed the 'rope road', the cable car network was built as a way to efficiently transport workers to and from the mines. It is still used today by workers, residents and tourists in the Chiatura 

The town was once the manganese mining capital of the world and was a considered vital to the Soviet Union during the Cold War, making the cable cars an important fixture in the town

Rush hour

The fall of the USSR brought an abrupt end to most industry in the area, leaving the cable car network a relic of a bygone era

This is what you trust your life to twice everyday

In an effort to conquer the town's extreme geography, the network of tramways were built so almost every corner of the mining town was accessible. Pictured, a girl waits for a cable car to arrive

Going to the mall?

The system transported the town's 4,000 workers from their homes at the bottom of the gorge to the mines in the mountains

Soooooooooooo Tell me…Who’s your beneficiary?

Sorry state: The now rusting cable cars were also used to transport the manganese to the various factories in the area

The view from above: The cable car network still boasts 17 functioning cabins and car lines that span more than 3.7miles