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The Department takes over the management of the Montenvers train from 1 Dec 2024

The Department takes over the management of the Montenvers train from 1 Dec 2024

For 70 years, the Montenvers funicular railway, that connects Chamonix and the Mer de Glace, has been owned by the Department of the Haute-Savoie. During this term, management of both the service and the infrastructure has been contracted to the Compagnie du Mont-Blanc (CMB) by way of a Delegation of Public Service (DSP) contract. That contract will end on 31 December 2023.

On Monday 9 October 2023, the elected representatives of the Departmental council of the Haute-Savoie, voted almost unanimously, not to renew the contract with the CMB, but to take over the management of the Montenvers funicular railway service and its assets. To do this, they elected to create a Public Industrial and Commercial Establishment (EPIC), which will be registered on 1 December 2023.

Within the EPIC, the elected members of the community have chosen to implement a personalised management system with a Board of Directors, a President and a Director.

The transition from the CMB to the EPIC will effectively take one year.
From 1 December 2024, the iconic red cogwheel railway will be managed directly by the community. The Compagnie du Mont-Blanc (CMB) will no longer operate the famous line.

Officially, the CMB management of the Montenvers funicular railway ends on December 31, 2023, but a short-term DSP contract between the Department and the CMB will come into effect from 1 January 2024 to 31 October 2024. This will allow time for the EPIC to become operationally effective. On 1 December 2024, the EPIC shall take over the day-to-day management of the service. This indicates that during the month of November 2024, there shall be no service. It is not clear who shall manage the assets and any maintenance contracts.

The President of the Department sought to reassure the employees of the CMB, who have expressed their concerns about their employment status. "They will all be employed by the EPIC, with their benefits will be retained, as the law obliges us to do." he stressed.

These decisions and this course of action is in not influenced by the elus of Chamonix.
​Three members of the Haute-Savoie elus abstained from the vote, one because she is the First Assistant to the Mayor of Chamonix and two others, the mayors of St. Gervais and Megeve because of their proximity.

One member of the Departmental elus did vote against the proposal, claiming that the Department does not have the knowledge or the expertise to manage the Montenvers railway.

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