The Pfaffenthal – Upper Town Panoramic Lift

The construction of a public lift between the historic district of Pfaffenthal and the upper city of Luxembourg was a multi challenges project: to promote soft mobility (pedestrians and bicycles), to open up a valley floor district with a free and fast mean of transportation, and to create a work of art, emblematic for the district and harmoniously integrated in this landscape protected by UNESCO.

This public facility attracts a wide range of users from mid-2016. From cyclists going to work, to tourists or regular residents, everyone has discovered the city from one of the most spectacular perspectives!

The success of this project, carried out by the City of Luxembourg and designed by STEINMETZDEMEYER in collaboration with INCA Associate Engineers and Jean Schmit Engineering is also due to its location. The lift’s foundations are in the heart of the historic district of Pfaffenthal and it directly arrives in the park Pescatore, where the user will find a direct connection to the cycle and pedestrian paths of the City. Moreover, these connections highly contribute to the development of the touristic and cultural trail Grund-Clausen-Pfaffenthal-Upper City.

The architects aimed at maximizing the comfort and the experience of the various users. In order to facilitate the movement of the cyclists, the cabin is equipped with two large opposite doors. Thus, they do not have to maneuver back and forth between the top and bottom accesses.

Suspended above the valley, the cabin is entirely out-sheath and is glazed from floor to ceiling on half of its surface. It thus offers to the users a journey through the landscapes of a quarry, the supporting walls, the wood on the side, to finish after 30 seconds on a magnificent panorama of the Alzette valley and the Kirchberg plateau.

At the upward exit of the lift, a footbridge is hung on the side of the tower. This footbridge is launched above the valley by an overhang of more than 9 meters, in order to offer fantastic panoramic landscapes on the architectural and contemporary heritage of the City of Luxembourg: the medieval district of Pfaffenthal, the sixties artwork Pont-Rouge (“The Red Bridge”), the Kirchberg district in a continuous urban development and the Bock, witness of the City’s origins in 963. The most reckless ones can contemplate this wonderful view through a sheet of glass at more than 60 meters above the district!

Practical, sustainable, aesthetic and offering an unforgettable experience, STDM architects always targeted these qualities while designing this public lift, which today constitutes a landmark in the valley and confers a new identity to the historical district of Pfaffenthal.

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