Longest outdoor escalator: Medellin sets world record (Video)
MEDELLIN, Colombia -- The Colombian city of Medellin has opened a giant outdoor escalator, divided into six sections and ascends nearly 384m (1,260ft), for residents of one of its poorest areas, Comuna 13 district - setting the new world record for the Longest outdoor escalator, according to World Record Academy (www.worldrecordacademy.com).
Photo: General view of the World's Longest Outdoor Escalator at Comuna 13 neighborhood in Medellin, Antioquia department, Colombia. Photo: Raul Arboleda/AFP (enlarge photo)
The Guinness world record for the first escalator (first inclined moving stairway) was invented and installed by Jesse W Reno (USA) in 1891 as a pleasure ride at Coney Island, New York , USA. This device had a vertical rise of 2.1 m (7 ft), an inclination of 25° and a speed of 22.8 m (75 ft) per minute.
Guinness World Records also recognized the world record for the greatest vertical height ascended by climbing stairs: 18,585 m (60,974 ft 4 in), set by Kurt Hess (Switzerland) who climbed the 45 m Esterli Tower in Lenzburg, Switzerland, and descended by foot 413 times.
People living in the Comuna 13 district - which clings to a steep hillside - previously had to climb hundreds of steps to get home from the city centre.
The World's Longest Outdoor Escalator is divided into six sections and ascends nearly 384m (1,260ft).
The mayor of Medellin says it is the first project of its kind in the world aimed specifically at the poor.
The $7m (£4.5m) escalator is the latest in a series of transport infrastructure projects that are helping to transform the city. It has a modern metro system, and some other hillside neighbourhoods are served by cable cars.
About 12,000 residents of Comuna 13 will benefit from the LOngest outdoor escalator in the world, which is free to use and shortens a half-hour walk to about five minutes. Best of all, there's a second escalator for the downhill journey as well.
Previously they had to walk the equivalent of a 30-storey building to get to and from the city centre.