The Santa Justa Elevator in Lisbon

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The Santa Justa Elevator, Elevador de Santa Justa in Portuguese, is a historic outdoor elevator located in the civil parish of Santa Justa, in the capital city of Lisbon, in Portugal. This early 20th century wrought iron elevator connects the lower streets of the Baixa with the higher level Largo do Carmo, and has been providing an invaluable service to the commuters by eliminating the slog up Carmo Hill. The beautiful ironwork with neo-gothic arches, sumptuous polished wood carriages and brass dials, was such a wondrous piece of art that it was adored by Lisbon’s residents ever since its construction. Today, it’s the only remaining vertical lift in the city and a famous tourist attraction.
Lisbon has many steep hills (the city is nicknamed ‘The City of Seven Hills’) that posed significant challenges to its citizens, which were initially overcome by installing inclines pulled by animals. During the industrial age several steam-powered funiculars such as the Elevador da Gloria were built and are still used to this day, now run by electricity. One of the inclines was replaced with a large elevator, the Elevador de Santa Justa.


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