New view of Penny Royal site

Click here to read Josef Chromy's vision for Tasmania

THERE'S only one thing Northern businessman Josef Chromy wants to do on his 85th birthday on December 15 next year: take a ride on his new chairlift.

Mr Chromy is proposing a chairlift linking his Penny Royal site to Launceston's Cataract Gorge, to give visitors a stunning aerial view of both the city and the iconic natural wonder. 

The proposal is the latest plank in Mr Chromy's $20 million vision for the redevelopment of the Penny Royal, which he bought last May.

The chairlift would feature four-seated gondolas, and run from the top of the cliff face at the southern end of the Penny Royal site, south-west between West Launceston and the Zig Zag reserve, and over the hill into the First Basin, finishing near the inclinator.

Mr Chromy conceded he'd only get his wish with community support.

``If I don't get that support, then clearly it won't happen,'' he said.

``At 83 years of age, I don't have too much time to debate the merits of the proposal.''

Mr Chromy unveils his plan in today's  My Vision  segment (on page 31), saying Northern Tasmania needs a world-class attraction to drive tourist numbers and give the region an economic boost.

Mr Chromy's JAC Group is finalising the master plan for the Penny Royal site, to be released in the coming weeks.

It will feature adventure activities, restaurants, cafes and a return of the much-loved boat rides.

Group managing director Dean Cocker said the chairlift would be a tourist gateway into the Gorge.

``It would link the city to the Gorge, and that's what's missing at the moment,'' Mr Cocker said.

``It's under-utilised by tourists and locals as well.''

Mr Cocker stressed two-thirds of the chairlift's proposed route would run outside of the Gorge grounds, using a council road reserve and the Penny Royal site.

lposkitt@examiner.com.au

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