The much awaited and long overdue cable car project in Nuwara Eliya is once again on the move.
Two new investors have come forward to build and operate this project which will be Sri Lanka’s first ever cable car venture fulfilling a much needed void for the travel industry.
The new project would be a joint venture between Aitken Spence and Shandon International of China which has built over 200 such cable car projects in the world. The total investment is expected to be in the excess of US$ 60 million.
Nuwara Eliya Mayor Mahinda Dodampegamage said that according to the plans, the project will be built in two stages and most of the approvals are now provided. Stage one one will be from the Nuwara Eliya right mountain to the Lake Gregory. “This would be a two kilometer stretch and there will be many recreation facilities including a mini hotel and host of restaurants at the top of the mountain where the cable car starts.
The second stage will be from the Nanu Oya town to the Nuwara Eliya city which will be a four kilometer stretch. “This is something I have been waiting for since it will allow us to fold up the plan to build a rail link from Nanu Oya to the Nuwara Eliya town.”
The construction is expected to commence late this year and is to be completed in less than two years.
He said the recently hosted Nuwara Eliya horse races by the Royal Turf Club has helped to increase both local and foreign tourists to the city. “I am happy that these races were conducted in a very high standard. We must also thank Royal Turf Club for investing over Rs.100 million to refurbish the race course which was in a very dilapidated state.”
He said tha the previous government spent nearly Rs. 100 million to build an altitude training center for Nuwara Eliya to attract world sports teams to train in Nuwara Eliya during the off season (April to August) “However nothing has been done and I want to launch an inquiry as to what happened to this money. I also want to reactivate this project by building a sports hostel and an international athletic track which will bring exchange to the country.”