An appeal by Mt Wellington Cableway Company (MWCC) over the refused construction of the controversial kunanyi/ Mt Wellington cable car in Hobart has been rejected by Tasmania’s planning authority.


The cable car project was originally rejected by Hobart City Council, causing the would-be developers to lodge an appeal of the ruling with the Tasmanian Civil and Administrative Tribunal.

Despite MWCC submitting a scaled-down proposal, which saw the footprint of the project on the summit reduced, and the number of people allowed to travel in the cable cars halved, the tribunal upheld the council’s original rejection of the plan. 

The tribunal found that 18 of the 26 grounds of refusal made by Hobart City Council were legitimate, including the impact on the biodiversity of the mountain, the noise created by the cable car, and the project’s visual impact. 

What does the community think?

The proposed cable car has been a controversial issue within the Hobart community, with many groups, including Traditional Custodians and environmental conservation and community groups actively opposing the project on cultural and environmental grounds.

Co-owner of Keep Tassie Wild, Josh Pringle, said today’s announcement brought ‘pure relief’ and extended his gratitude to everyone who’s contributed to the fight to save kunanyi and the Organ Pipes.

‘To look up at the Organ Pipes and simply enjoy their majesty, rather than thinking about the fight to protect them, is something we haven’t been able to do for over ten years! It feels great!’, Josh said.

‘There’s still a chance MWCC will try to challenge the decision in court. Or try again in a few years. Sadly it ain’t truly dead till the developers say it’s dead. But most likely, this is the final nail in the coffin,’ he said.

Chair of the MWCC, Chris Oldfield told ABC News he was disappointed about the decision and that the company would seek legal and planning advice over the technical details of the tribunal’s decision. 

‘The tribunal’s determination and its implications for the future of the project also need to be considered by our board and key shareholders,’ he told ABC.

Whether this divisive issue has come to a conclusion is yet to be determined. Here’s hoping.


Feature photo thanks to Luke Tscharke