As a way of creating more fun for citizens and tourists as well as add to the municipality’s economic advantage, Durban is set to host a conference and exhibition on cable car.
Announcing this on Tuesday, KwaZulu-Natal‘s economic development, tourism and environmental affairs MEC Mike Mabuyakhulu said the meeting which is scheduled for April 3 to April 5, hopes to provide answers to building a cable car in the Drakensberg mountains.
“Through the conference, we hope to gain a better understanding of all the issues that can influence the development of the cable car and the best model to be used in development,”he said
Mabuyakhulu added that managerial and operation of the project, in the context of our environment will also be considered.
Though the project has been criticized as being in a world heritage site and would cost an estimated R500 million especially as the city has just spent a whooping sum for the just concluded Nicki Minaj concert, Mabayakhulu supported it because he believed it will be of great economic gain for the country.
“The benefits of the project will not only be derived from the fact that it would offer another iconic tourism facility in the province, but in that it will catalyse the economy of the Drakensberg and beyond, and create an economic domino effect throughout the province.
In pursuing this project, we are already working with the government of the Kingdom of Lesotho to explore what we can do to ensure that this project becomes a game changer.”
Delegations of the department earlier planned to take a trip to various cable car sites in the world but this was intercepted by opposition parties who were of the opinion that the department can save money by just visiting those sites online or emailing other cable car operators.
According to the statement, the best site for the cable car is at Mount Amery, south of the Royal Natal National Park in the Drakensberg Mountains. It is located on land owned by the Ingonyama Trust and outside the uKhahlamba-Drakensberg World heritage Site.
The statement claimed that the province had initiated a full Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) had been notified of the project so that “the global organisation’s criteria on EIAs could be taken into consideration”.