At the western end of the Rua de Santa Justa stands Lisbon's most striking and novel means of public transport. The Carmo Lift (also called the Santa Justa Lift) links the lower town with Chiado in the upper town.
The lift is a typical iron construction from the turn of the century and its design is often wrongly attributed to Alexandre Gustav Eiffel.
Rua de Santa Justa, Lisboa, Portugal
7am-11pm; Sun: 9am-11pm
Transit: Subway: Rossio; Bus: 1, 2, 9, 11, 32, 39, 44, 45, 46, 80, 83, 90.
In fact Raoul Mesnier de Ponsard was commissioned to design a lift which would overcome the approximately 32m/105ft height difference at this point. A few years earlier the same inventor had constructed another lift (no longer in existence) further south on the Largo do Municipio.
The Carmo Lift was built between 1898 and 1901 and was officially opened on August 31, 1901. Two cabins travel up and down the tower with room for 25 people in each.
The elaborate exterior is in a Neo Gothic style with touches of filigree. From the upper exit there is a marvelous view of the Rossio and the grid like street layout of the Baixa, as well as the Castelo de Sao Jorge opposite. There is also an interesting view from the bridge which crosses the Rua do Carmo at a great height and links the lift with the Largo do Carmo. The streets below, which were destroyed in August 1988 by a great fire are, now gradually being rebuilt. The fire was only put out a short way from the lift.