Elevators of Valparaiso

Website for collecting media & memories of the industrial heritage of the elevators of Valparaiso, Chile

Valparaiso’s Lifts and Funiculars are a unique living industrial heritage in the world, for they are machines and facilities that, in some cases, have been operating for more that 100 years. Their recovery is a challenge, since technological systems that have been generally discontinued for more than half a century are to be rebuilt, recovered and/or maintained. Consideration must be given to the fact that, according to the experience worldwide, the industrial heritage is usually recovered for ornamental or recreational purposes. That is, the machines will be subject to partial operation or no operation at all. On the contrary, a Living Industrial Heritage means that the machinery will be used on a daily basis by the users. Such is the case of Valparaiso’s Lifts and Funiculars.

The technical recovery and maintenance of Valparaiso’s Lifts and Funiculars must come along with the generation of new institutional standards, a new management model to create an Integrated System for all the Lifts and Funiculars of Valparaiso as an important part of its transport system, supported by only one technical inspection office that will maintain such devices.

The operation of Valparaiso’s Lifts and Funiculars generate a set of undeniable and positive externalities for the city, the Valparaiso Region and Chile. These devices are one of the icons why Valparaiso is renowned worldwide. They are part of every visitor’s social imaginary of the city. Everybody wants to have the worthy experience of paying a visit and getting into one of these artefacts. We propose to ask for an extension of the area recognised by UNESCO as World Heritage. To this, the Lifts and Funiculars of Valparaiso’s Integrated System must be included.

If you are interested in supporting this initiative, please contact us at info@leapfrog.cl