The Skymetro (Automated People Mover, APM) is a subterranean air cushion cableway for passengers at Zurich Airport. It was built in the framework of the Fifth Building Stage and is Switzerland’s most frequented cableway.
Since September 2003, the subterranean cableway links the Airside Center with Dock E via two tunnels and travels under Piste 10/28. The costs for the construction of the Skymetro amounted to 165 million Swiss Franks, the tunnel construction alone cost 90 million.
Skymetro covers the distance of 1136 meters between Airside Center und Dock E on a 0.2 mm air cushion over a road of concrete. Pulled by a steel cable the runs take about 2 minutes and 45 seconds and reach a maximum speed of 48km/h or 13,3 meters per second. Up to three trains with two or three cars and a capacity of 112 persons leave at a minimum of every three minutes. As a result, Skymetro can transport up to 4,200 passengers per hour.
Since the fall of 2006, 160 light boxes have been installed every hundred meters in the two Skymetro tunnels. These show individual scenes of a short film. Passengers in the Skymetro rushing by will experience in a few seconds a film as if it were a flipbook. The two topical films “Heidi” and “Matterhorn” are highly popular with visitors from abroad as well as with Swiss passengers.