Drakensberg Cable Car

14 May 2012 10:15 #53858 by Stijn
I've heard rumours about this one before but all previous versions were considering the Sentinel. Seems "they" are targeting the Mnweni area now (possibly to circumvent protected reserves and the resulting red tape?). :angry:

www.climbing.co.za/2012/05/cable-car-plan-for-drakensberg/

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14 May 2012 10:21 #53861 by dirktalma
I heard that back in the day they wanted to put up a cable car North-West of the Amphi. Apparently there were plans for a ski-resort too there

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14 May 2012 10:32 #53863 by intrepid
The Mnweni proposal is not news to me, but it seems the idea is getting a fresh punt.

The business model for the cable car is weak as far as I've heard - its actually not that profitable. The other thing is that the Upper Mnwneni will ultimately become part of the UDP-WHS which I think should stop this plan dead in it's tracks. Will try find out more.

Take nothing but litter, leave nothing but a cleaner Drakensberg.
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14 May 2012 13:29 #53866 by Mattalica
My missus just came home and told me that this story was in the mecury and then I saw you guys had already posted... Would love to hear more about this and how it will hopefully not come to be.

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14 May 2012 13:54 #53867 by diverian
Its probably just politicians letting out hot air with their lips flapping..... the tourism indaba is on in Durban and they needed something to say!
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14 May 2012 16:05 #53871 by BlackRaven
I haven't been this upset in a while... I can picture all the litter and graffiti already; left by those that haven't gained any respect for the mountains by spending real time with it. I really hope this doesn't come to pass.

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15 May 2012 07:34 #53872 by intrepid
I see there is a tender open to do a feasibility study and business plan for the cable car:
www.sa-tenders.co.za/tendershow.asp?ID=57057
The intention to do this in the Mnweni has been around for years literally, but someone is definitely stirring up the idea again.

Take nothing but litter, leave nothing but a cleaner Drakensberg.

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15 May 2012 07:49 #53873 by diverian
Tender issued by Dept of Basic Education ?????

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15 May 2012 11:57 #53879 by tiska
I hate even thinking about the prospect of a cable car in the Mnweni area. It is the stuff of nightmares.

There are, however, many things which make the running of the cable car a challenge. Here are some of them:

1) without any other major investment, the cable car would be a stand alone attraction and would not draw the necessary traffic to make it viable. It is a long drive in to the Mnweni - compare this with the TM cable car - which is right in the city. This alone has kept the idea at bay for decades.
2) construction of the approach road would be expensive and the road would need to reach far into the valleys. The cable itself would have to be pretty much 'underneath' the escarpment.
3) the top station would lie on a contested border
4) not far from the top station, Lesotho is busy building wind turbines. Someone somewhere will realize that when the wind blows hard, the cable car can't work - that happens a lot in winter. In summer the thing is in the mist most days.
5) the berg loving community will make it extremely expensive to gain permission for this particular piece of vandalism. For one, there would need to be an exit strategy, so that the infrastructure would be removed if the project didn't work. Funds would need to be set aside to ensure this. That doubles the cost.

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15 May 2012 12:50 #53883 by abdavies
Although this is not the first or last time we will hear about such an idea, it sends shivers down my spine every time! Is there not something we as a Berg community and forum can do to stop this?

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