Tasmanian Times


Draft Plan proposes virtually unfettered development at the summit of Mt Wellington


The TCT today condemned the Draft Wellington Park Management Plan for proposing to allow virtually unfettered development at the summit of Mt Wellington.

The TCT Director Peter McGlone said today that: ‘The Draft Management Plan proposes to allow a cable car plus the associated infrastructure and commercial development on the summit of Mt Wellington which is totally incompatible with its delicate alpine environment and high scenic qualities.’

‘It is greatly disappointing that the while the draft plan provides ample evidence for why such development should not be allowed this evidence has been ignored, presumably in response to political pressure.’

The TCT urges all concerned members of the Tasmanian public to make submissions to the Draft Management Plan calling for the current prohibition on major commercial development on the summit to be retained and to encourage low key alternative transport to the summit instead of a cable car.

The TCT intends to issue a more detailed media release regarding its response to the Draft Management Plan later in the week.

Peter McGlone

Tasmanian Conservation Trust Inc
Ph: 03 62 343552
2nd fl, 191-193 Liverpool St, Hobart 7000
Email : tct6@bigpond.com
Fax: 03 62 312491
Web: www.tct.org.au

Geoff Law: What Mt Wellington really needs

• Peter Whish-Wilson: Cable Car – the Real Deal or simply Climbing the Mountain of Conflict?

Senator Peter Whish-Wilson, Australian Greens spokesperson for Tourism, today expressed concern at the renewed push for a cable car on Mount Wellington and the new draft Wellington Park Management Plan which allows development at the summit of Mount Wellington.

“I recently met with Sky Rail owner and consultant Dr Ken Chapman in Cairns and he described the business case for a cable car on Mount Wellington as very complicated and far from certain to be economically viable.

“Any serious push to for a Mount Wellington cable car has in the past resulted in community division. In 1984 there was a serious push for a cable car and again in 1993 and on both occasions there was no economic backing, the project was not viable and the cable car was put aside.

“The Wellington Park Management Trust was then set up to protect the natural and cultural values of the Mountain and they have, until now, prohibited development, specifically cable cars, on the summit.

“There are existing well thought out developments and proposals for the mountain including the North-South bike track and the Springs development.

“We need to continue the discussion about development of the mountain and how we can enhance eco-tourism and economic performance without threatening its environmental and cultural values.”

Office of Senator Peter Whish-Wilson
GPO Box 158 Hobart Tasmania
Phone: 03 6224 3222
Fax: 03 6224 7599
Web: peter-whish-wilson.greensmps.org.au/
Senator Whish-Wilson’s protfolios include Tourism, Trade, Small Business and Competition Policy, Waste and Tasmanian Marine issues.

Author Credits: [show_post_categories parent="no" parentcategory="writers" show = "category" hyperlink="yes"]


  1. Nathan Carswell

    August 31, 2012 at 5:07 pm

    What the?? Does the TCT really think prohibition of sensitive development and eco-friendly transport should be continued?

    The draft plan will never allow a McDonalds in the park; it’s loaded with red tape to disallow that. Adrian Bold has been pretty clear that he wouldn’t be advocating for a cable car and summit amenities that would damage the very reason we love the mountain so much. SO many positives to consider. Mr Bold met with Dr Chapman too and now has financial backers to finally test the feasibility. What an astounding achievement for a young bloke amongst such negativity in this State!! Best of luck to the smart cookie, we need more people like Adrian, let’s not scare him off!

    Peter Whish-Wilson is way off the mark. The 1993 proposal was an ill-thought out 5 storey monolith and would have been traveled over South Hobart residents homes; No PWW,, Poor planning, lack of community consultation and public opinion is what killed it in 1993. Thank god we’re not dealing with that anymore, it would have been dreadful IMO. Be wary of PWW who could be looking for political mileage on this like Bob Brown had in the past.

    I for one have my eyes and ears open this time around and won’t be misguided by emotional rubbish thrown out by the TCT.

  2. John Boy

    August 29, 2012 at 6:06 pm

    If I can believe most of the people against he cable car developement I hope you have all been to simmilar developements throughout the world. I doubt it becuaes if you have you would have realised that this sought of developement brings the summit to the masses.Why don’t we close the road and only make it available for the few (bushwalkers))Stupid you may think; the same thinking goes with providing an alweather cable car. If Cradle mountain was only accessible by gravel road from Devonport how many tourists would go there ? Not many.Tourism is about accessibilty, travel the national Parks of USA and Canada and you might gain an insight into eco tourism in the real world, it’s about access for the general public , not about locking up areas that noone but the privelegded can can experiencd.We in Tasmania hgave much to learn.

  3. Wining Pom

    August 28, 2012 at 12:19 am

    I suppose the next thing will be a great big yellow M overlooking the city.

  4. lmxly

    August 27, 2012 at 8:35 pm

    As noted on another thread, capital costs are the key to any development. BHP couldn’t raise the capital and make a viable case for the Olympic Dam expansion, nor could Gunns for the TVPM. The last proposal for a cable car, in 1993, fell over because the financial case did not stack up; and my expectation is that this one won’t either – provided there is no government subsidy. As P W-W notes, this proposal is much more complex financially – as well as environmentally – that the Cairns skyway, which Chapman is honest enough to admit. He came, he saw, he went away…and I doubt that Bold will get his JVPs, just as Gunns couldn’t.

  5. john Hayward

    August 27, 2012 at 2:37 pm

    Mt Welly has the potential to replace Queenstown as a monument to the Tassie triumph over nature.

    I can already envision the cable cars, shaped like enormous white shoes, carrying tourists up to gasp at the prices in the mountain-top bistro.

    John Hayward

  6. Doug Nichols

    August 27, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    I understand what’s special about Mt Wellington (as do a lot of people). I want it to remain special for everyone in the future to enjoy as I have enjoyed it over the years. Things have been proposed in the past that would have seriously damaged that specialness, so we do need to be vigilant. I take the time to download and read the management plan (and note: others have clearly taken a LOT of time writing it!). And I take the time to post a summary of a few points that caught my attention.

    So I am thinking about the issue. Informing myself. Getting involved. Having my say.

    Who is “bored and boring” around here #5?

  7. phill Parsons

    August 27, 2012 at 11:35 am

    #3 gets it right with a wine and cocktail bar being called for. Hey what about a casino!.

  8. A.K.

    August 27, 2012 at 10:15 am

    Mt Wellington is one of the last untouched and non polluted pristine mountains in close proximity to a major city on the planet, yet these fools want to destroy the fabulous view with a horrible cable car and commercial development. Why not put huge power pylons all over it as well, no different to the horror of cable car destroying the view.

    The best thing to do would be to install light rail to the summit along the road line, this would provide an excellent tourist attraction, provide transport to the summit and not be an eye sore. It could stop at the Springs and other places along the way, providing transport to Sth Hobart and mountain area’s. A cable car would only have a stop at the bottom and top. Not very practicable or economically sound. If you started light electric rail in the centre of Hobart, it would provide more than a tourist service and could be developed to cover all of Hobart in the end. This would remove smelly polluting buses.

    Any development on the summit, should be done in such a way as to be inconspicuous and hidden from view. In ground facilities would achieve this and should be low cost people friendly, instead of priced only for the elite.

  9. phill Parsons

    August 27, 2012 at 2:09 am

    #2 I am not sure where James gets $60M and would be interested in a breakdown. The Budget Papers state Outputs in the order of #25M for Tourism and $3M for Events. $10M is flagged for marketing which if that is the total spent on time or space leaves only $15M for other expenditure.

  10. TGC

    August 27, 2012 at 1:56 am

    Once the bored and boring get sick of the Margiris business they can turn their attention to Mt Wellington- summitt to do I guess now that forest protests have gone off the boil.

  11. john m

    August 27, 2012 at 12:43 am

    How can anyone raise an eyebrow about development on the urban mountain when most of Tassie’s ancient native forests will be gone in our, and our children’s, lifetime?

    Accessibility on the mountain is economic environmentalism at its best, with the potential to enhance, not degrade, respect for natural landscapes.

    Lord knows Tassie could do with more respect for Ma Nature.

  12. Doug Nichols

    August 26, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    I need to read the draft in more detail before putting in a submission. But…

    Allowing developments at the pinnacle will be hard to contain once it is started, and hard to keep small. Developers will always want more (and politicians will mostly take their side). At least the “pinnacle zone” is tightly confined and extends no further down the slope than the current lookout building, but alarm bells are ringing on this one nevertheless.

    Allowing “off-premises” consumption of food purchased at a cafe (or whatever) at the pinnacle (should one be put there) = litter problem (where non exists at present).

    A fee for using the road “particularly if an alternative transport option were to be provided” sounds like turning the summit into a money-making facility for a private company. I realise it’s not a definite proposal, but it is mentioned. I will need to think carefully about that one.

    Good points: looking after the water catchment continues to be a high priority (which is good for more than just the water quality); the “remote zone” is appreciated for what it is, which should ensure its preservation; the track connecting to the SW gets a mention.

  13. Greg James

    August 26, 2012 at 10:07 pm

    It is good to hear one politician amongst many other party hacks, P W-W actually apply common sense to this project.
    Since the cable car was first proposed very little economic rationale has been applied to this idea. Indeed most of the supporters have used the phrase ‘boost to tourism’ to qualify their support, they also used the same expression for the Dismal Swamp build, Federal Hotels idiotic investment in Freycinet and the Three Capes walk, yet Tourism in Tasmania goes constantly backwards under its current leadership and the same silly ideas keep re-surfacing and the same faces think its all so innovative.
    The reality is that Tourism has stalled, ideas have stagnated and the only innovation in tourism has been at MONA, by someone who has no interest in government participation in his business model.

    This should be a lesson to Scot Bacon, who has yet to question $1.00 of the $60 million wasted annually on Tourism. Wasted, you ask, well when a product is so mature it is stale, exhibits continual annual decline in visitors and revenue and no questions are asked, no one is fired, no changes to operation are made and the industry itself is so battered, it is de-moralized, then you really can say wasted.
    The Minister makes the same dull speech each fortnight and the managers all applaud that speech and the results come in and nothing changes, well thats the future for your kids and their apprenticeships, keep voting for these people and you will keep getting the same results.

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