PARKS Victoria is selling the rights to manage one of the Mornington Peninsula’s biggest, yet most ill-fated tourist attractions – the Arthurs Seat Chairlift.
Parks is looking for an operator to design, construct, run and maintain the new tourist hub – which would replace the existing 1960 facility, which shut in 2006 after a string of safety faults left holiday-makers injured, stranded, or both.
Up for grabs is a 950-metre chairlift path, and associated tracts of land at each end of the 305-metre summit, which previously supported a small thriving retail centre.
Parks Victoria is encouraging prospective bidders to investigate new tourism-based initiatives for the site, which would boost visitor numbers to the Mornington Peninsula, which is popular for its wineries, vineyards, beaches and National Parks.
Development of the new Arthurs Seat Chairlift is expected to take about two years, and should open before the completion of the controversial $750 million, 25-kilometre Peninsula Link (Frankston Bypass), connecting the Frankston Freeway and Eastlink at Carrum Downs, with the Mornington Peninsula Freeway at Mount Martha.
Knight Frank director and selling agent Michael Hede said other factors Parks Victoria will consider in selecting a chairlift operator, include the bidder’s proposed lease term, management experience, financial capacity, and commitment to ecological and sustainable development.
It’s been previously reported between $3 million and $4 million would need to be invested on rebuilding the chairlift alone.