Table Mountain cableway to close for seven weeks' maintenance

Maintenance on one of the rotating cable cars.
Maintenance on one of the rotating cable cars.
Image: Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company/Gary Hirson

Table Mountain cableway will be shutting down for extensive maintenance over seven weeks from next month — the longest overhaul since the tourist attraction was upgraded in 1997.

Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company (TMACC) said on Tuesday that the cableway, as well as commercial outlets such as shops and restaurants at the upper and lower stations, will be closed from July 15 to September 1.

“Just like how we take our cars in for regular servicing, based on actual mileage, we rigorously inspect and service every aspect of the cableway, ensuring consistent alignment with international best practice and the original equipment manufacturers (OEM) specifications,” said technical executive Andries de Vries.

Map of routes affected by the seven-week maintenance window.
Map of routes affected by the seven-week maintenance window.
Image: Supplied

“This winter we will be replacing all four of the 1.5km-long track rope cables (the station-to-station length is 1.2km),” said De Vries. This will be the first full cable replacement since the 1997 revamp introduced a Swiss-made cableway system with two rotating cable cars, each of which can carry 65 passengers. The pre-’97 cable cars each transported 28 people.

The mountain will still be accessible to hikers, but hiking trails directly under the pathway of the cables will be closed for safety reasons.

“The key difference is that there will be no cable car trips to take you up or more importantly bring you to the bottom. Thus hikers should be mindful of changing weather conditions when embarking on a hike up Table Mountain, knowing that they would have to hike down,” said TMACC executive director Selma Hercules.

Residents and tourists were advised to expect early morning helicopter activity on and around the mountain as heavy machinery is flown up the mountain piecemeal to be assembled at the top.

The work will be carried out in co-operation with a team of experts from the original equipment manufacturer in Switzerland.

The cableway first started operating in 1929.



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