Arosa Bergbahnen AG
Ski run /surface correction "Vettertraverse" (Ski slope No. 15, section Tomelistrasse to the valley station Tschuggen Ost/Seeblickstrasse)
1. Initial situation
The ski run Tschugga East to the village centre and with a direct connection to the station is the most important downhill run in the snow sports region Arosa. With the new Passerelle between the station and Seeblickstrasse, constructed in 2014, the Tschugga East downhill run has become even more important since snow sports fans can now make their way directly (without detour) from the ski run to the station. In the bottom section of the ski run, the so-called Vettertraverse, the Tschugga East ski run becomes narrow and steep, is often frozen-over and too difficult for children and less experienced skiers and snowboarders. With the partial revision of local planning in 2016, the municipality and the Arosa Bergbahnen laid the foundations for the widening of the piste in the area of the Vettertraverse. This will create diversion opportunities. Integrated to the partial revision is also the route of the ski path between "Seeegga" and the valley station of the chairlift Tschuggen East, which was actually already planned for the current zone plan. This cannot be used as a ski run at present due to the current descent.
2. Description of the project
After the presentation of the permission for woodland clearing, respective woodland areas were cleared in September 2018. The clearing concerns an area of altogether 1453 m2. Together with the clearing, changes of the terrain are also necessary. For a distance of approx. 150 m, soil is to be removed immediately after the underpass Tomelibrücke and to be deposited as support for the existing dry-stone wall. The existing narrow ski path will be slightly lowered, and the soil will be deposited directly next to it. The cubic volume of the cleared soil amounts to altogether approximately 1966 m3. No material will be added or removed. The marked area for the path amounts to approximately 1325 m2. With the lowering of the current level of the ski run and the earth shifts, the snow-making facilities from 1996 will be updated and replaced by the new efficient snow producing generation.
The ski run correction eliminates the bottleneck between the Tomeli underpass and Seeblickstrasse. With this project, the current safety risks will be massively reduced. It defuses this “bottleneck” and allows for a more evenly sized piste, which reduces the hump formation, improves the flow of guests, and reduces the accident risk. This involves relatively modest interferences, which will impair the landscape insignificantly. The Arosa Bergbahnen are most concerned with an optimal and most careful execution of the piste corrections, which they have already successfully demonstrated in preceding projects involving area corrections (Traxloch, Schlittelbahn, Skilifttrassee, Strohkurve). The works are to be carried out in summer 2019.
To complete the offers for bikers, Arosa Tourism and the Arosa Bergbahnen AG have decided to realize a temporary skill centre during the summer months, similar to the training area “Honigland” in winter, in the vicinity of the Hörnli-Express valley station, and to submit the application for use with the planning application to the municipality Arosa in February 2019.
A skill centre for bikers offers a training platform with relevant bends, root, wood and stone elements, which will prepare bikers with the necessary bike techniques they might need to enjoy the Hörnli Trail, or individual routes in the area, afterwards. For the construction, only minor earth shifts will be necessary, and no concrete work will be carried out. Additional elements are made available with mobile facilities, which are in each case dismantled by the end of the summer season. This concerns, for example, the conveyor belt, which is already used in the winter for the Honigland at the Prätschli, or mobile wood ramps.
The skill centre is available to all user groups free of charge and will be in operation exclusively during the official opening times of the Hörnli-Express (Summer 2019: daily, between the 29th of June to 20th October 2019 from 9 am to 5 pm).
To ensure that user groups are accordingly equipped, the Hörnli-Express valley station will also offer bike rental and a kiosk. The operation of these services is also reduced to the opening times of the Hörnli-Express. The expected service offerings will be publicly tendered in the current issue of the Aroser Zeitung, which allow interested enterprises to establish a summer business and create jobs.
The bike masterplan of Arosa Lenzerheide points out that there is room for development for Flow Trails in the region of Arosa Lenzerheide. The new Flow Trail at Hörnli in Arosa aims at filling this supply gap. Trail developers as well as other bike experts agree that the Hörnli Flow Trail is set to become a one-of-a-kind bike experience in the Alps. The distance of just 7 km as well as the topographic setting at the Hörnli allow for a unique Trail Flow that can accommodate nearly all levels of riders, even families.
The project of the snow sports experience park Tschuggen highlights the two concepts of Arosa: «the ski area within the village» and «snow sports youth development». The concepts aim at facilitating the access to snow sports and at developing the Tschuggen hill into a unique and creative snow sports experience park over the course of several years. The Tschuggen area is located around the middle station where the bears will find their new homes in summer 2018. In coordination with key service providers of Arosa, the Arosa Bergbahnen AG chose to incorporate the theme of the bears into the development of the snow sports experience park Tschuggen.
Stage 1; «Honeyland» at Prätschli (Opening Winter 2017/18)
Arosa Bergbahnen AG launched the «Honeyland Prätschli» in winter 2017/18 as part of the overreaching tourism project by Erlebnisplan GmbH. The Honeyland is a public and free skiing area for beginners and kids with the aim of facilitating the learning experience to newcomers to the sport. It should also address the needs of returnees and rekindle their joy of snow sports. In addition to a 45m-long conveyer belt and the Prätschli skilift, the area is transformed into a Honeyland with bee hives, honeycomb chairs, honey parcours, etc. The first batch of honey at the Prätschli was «produced» on the 23 December 2017.
2. Stage; Ski lift Tomeli and «Bärensnowpark» Ried (opening winter 2018/19)
The 2. stage includes the snow sports production of the mountain station Prätschli, designed as an apiary, with a passage to the valley station of the ski lift Tomeli, where a hibernating bear, displayed as a photo point silhouette, is dreaming at the station building. The ski lift follows the bear enclosure, along to the Tschuggen. From there, two signposts show the guests the way to the «Bärensnowpark» at the ski lift Ried. There, young snow sports enthusiasts between 6 and 12 years can enjoy the publicly accessible and Bärenfunpark free of charge: on the stream, the forest trail, the rocky slope and the windy river, the children will explore with simple obstacles different routes from the view of a bear.
In order to increase snowmaking efficiency, the Arosa Bergbahnen AG will start using the water reserves at the Isel groundwater lake from November 2018. The partner project between the municipality of Arosa and the Arosa Bergbahnen AG aims at capitalising on existing infrastructure and at avoiding bottle neck situations. The existing groundwater pump at Isel is currently transporting water to the Reservoir Promenade. Following the construction of the reservoir, the municipality can significantly improve the reserve of fire-fighting water in the area of Waldpromenade and Innerarosa and close an important safety gap. The Arosa Bergbahnen AG benefits by feeding the water from the Isel pump directly to the snowmaking system at Tomeli. The water is either used immediately for snowmaking at the Tschuggen or diverted to storage facilities at the middle station of the storage reservoir. Construction and modification to existing facilities will begin in June 2018. The project should be operational at the beginning of the winter season 2018/19.
The first vision of connecting the two winter sports regions of Arosa and Lenzerheide had first been developed in the 70’s. The large-scale project of constructing a pillar-less, system-independent cable car between Hörnli and Urdenfürggli was realised during one summer season in only 8 months. The inauguration took place on 14th January 2014.
The two stylish design gondolas can fit 150 people. Guests travel at a speed of 12 m/s and reach the neighbouring holiday region within 5 minutes.
The new winter sports paradise of Arosa Lenzerheide boasts 43 lifts and around 225 km of pistes. It is the largest connected ski area in the canton of Grisons and among the top ten ski resorts in Switzerland.