| Projects | Archive | 2010-02-11

Novices and families to benefit from new Express Chairlift at Coronet Peak / NZ

There will be more fun for novice skiers and riders on the slopes at New Zealand’s premier ski resort this winter thanks to a significant upgrade of the ‘Big Easy’ novice area which includes a new, state-of-the-art quad chairlift.

The Meadows double chairlift at Coronet Peak will be replaced with a new Leitner-Poma detachable quad chairlift which, for a number of reasons, will be the first of its kind to be installed in the Southern Hemisphere.  The existing novice terrain is to be re-graded with a new link back to the lift and an additional beginner area will be created adjacent to the existing Magic Carpet conveyor lift.

The new express quad chair includes a range of safety features, including an automatic loading carpet that takes skiers and riders to the load point making it super simple to get onto the chair. A first in the Southern Hemisphere, it also features an automated safety bar which descends over passengers as the chair leaves the lift terminal and rises prior to disembarking at the top.  There is also a “kid stop” mechanism designed to ensure very young skiers don’t slip underneath the bar – it comes up between their legs to keep them in place.

The new chairlift terminals will be located in approximately the same place but capacity will increase to a maximum of 2000 passengers per hour.  The existing chair moves up to 1200 per hour.

Ski Area Manager Hamish McCrostie said the improvements to novice and beginner facilities completely rounded out the Coronet Peak experience making it more fun than ever for beginners, novices and families.

“This upgrade will exponentially improve the overall beginner and novice experience.  Facilities for learners were really the last key areas we needed to work on to bring Coronet Peak up to true world-class standard.

“The new chairlift will be safe and easy for children to ride without accompanying adults, which will free up parents to ski or ride the rest of the mountain if they wish. The new base area will also provide plenty of extra space making learning more fun for both first time and novice skiers/riders.  We’re looking forward to welcoming all learners with a greatly improved dedicated area for fun in the snow.  “

The 2010 improvements are part of a five-year multi-million dollar redevelopment programme which has elevated Coronet Peak to true international status.  The redevelopment has included the installation of the six-seater Greengates lift, a massive snowmaking system and a stunning new base building which provides state-of-the-art facilities and magnificent views across the Wakatipu Basin.

Located 20 minutes drive from central Queenstown, Coronet Peak ski area is scheduled to open on Saturday 5 June.

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