4:34am Thursday, 21 June BlueMountainsAustralia.com
Blue Mountains News
Scenic World Bolsters Tourism Investment with New Skyway Upgrade
Scheduled for completion in mid November, the new Scenic Skyway will increase the ride’s capacity by 30% to provide a more spacious visitor experience and improve queuing times during peak periods.
Built by world leading ropeway engineering company, Garaventa, the re-configured cabin will also allow for streamlined loading and unloading, and visitors will be able to access free onboard wi-fi for the first time.
The Skyway upgrade comes just four years after Scenic World’s $30 million overhaul of the iconic Scenic Railway, contributing to a $33 million investment in infrastructure over the past five years.
It also marks the next phase of the Scenic Skyway’s evolution ahead of the ride’s 60th anniversary in 2018.
Scenic World’s Managing Director Anthea Hammon said the Skyway upgrade was part of Scenic World’s mission to evolve as a tourism business and provide unique experiences that appeal to visitors from across the globe.
“We have come a long way as a family business since my grandfather opened Scenic World in 1945, but we recognise the importance of moving forward so we can maintain our leading position in a competitive market and continue to capture the hearts and minds of our valued visitors,” she said.
“We are constantly looking for new ways to innovate, invest and grow as a business, and the Scenic Skyway upgrade is part of our vision to exceed our visitors’ expectations and set new standards of excellence in the Australian attractions industry.”
Originally built in 1958 by Scenic World founder Harry Hammon, the original Skyway cabin was clad in plywood and painted bright pink.
Without the luxuries of modern day technology, the original cable was manually installed by dragging a steel cable down each side of the valley and joining it in the middle to affix a track rope which was then tensioned with a four-wheel drive tractor.
The Skyway has seen many upgrades over the years, including a change to its signature yellow colour before a new cabin and cable system was installed in 2004.
Harry’s son, Philip Hammon, who retired as Scenic World Managing Director in 2011 before passing the business onto his children, said the Skyway was heralded as an entrepreurial development in tourism back in the 50s, and has maintained its status as one of the world’s most iconic nature-based attractions.
“Like so many of our visitors, I have fond childhood memories of travelling on the original pink cabin which made headlines as Australia’s first cable car back in 1958,” he said.
“It’s been fascinating to watch the Skyway’s evolution and many loyal customers who travelled on the original Skyway still enjoy visiting the old cabin which now resides in Scenic World’s onsite park.”
The Scenic Skyway will be closed from October 9 during the upgrade project, and is set to re-open in mid November, 2017. Scenic World’s other popular attractions – the Scenic Railway, Cableway and Walkway – will operate as usual, and ticket prices will be reduced.
For more information on the Scenic Skyway closure, including a list of frequently asked questions, and more information on Scenic World’s other rides and attractions, visit scenicworld.com.au
This article archived 11 Nov 2017
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