The recent massive investment in NZ skiing continues with huge $35m development plans including spectacular new lifts at Coronet Peak and The Remarkables.
The exciting new combo gondola & 6 pack chairlift at Coronet Peak is proceeding right on schedule, with the towers going in late March.
The timetable continues like this to be ready for another huge winter season:
late march – early April: drive station foundation construction; assembly/installation of top station via crane; floor install on basement building
- April –14 line towers erection via crane/helicopter & assembly/installation of drive station via crane; revegetation
- late April/early May – haul rope pull and splice; chair delivery; revegetation
- early June – test runs and commissioning
The upgraded Telemix (combined gondola/chairlift) will replace the current Coronet Express with a mix of chairs and gondola cabins for the 2019 season that starts mid-June. The Coronet Peak upgrade is part of the mountain’s preparation for 2019/2020 summer operations that will include mountain biking.
The gondola will be especially useful for the top-to-bottom night skiing on frosty nights at Coronet.
NZSki, who operate Coronet Peak & The Remarkables, intends to build these lifts during the coming summer if regulatory and Department of Conservation consents are obtained.
CEO of NZSki Paul Anderson says the major plans keep up with demand and growth.
“We’ve had an absolute record winter at Coronet Peak and The Remarkables and these developments along with our future plans for growth are absolutely key to the future here in Queenstown.
Both Coronet Peak and The Remarkables are much-loved ski fields with a loyal following. Both of these mountains are part of the fabric of the
Queenstown and wider community, and integral to our winter lives.
“We recognise the demand to continue to offer exciting and safe experiences at a world-class standard. With that comes responsible and sustainable development to keep up with the latest innovations in technology and safety, as well as with the expectations of guests including our locals.
The Remarkables new Sugar Bowl lift delayed a year
Unfortunately the equally exciting new developments across the valley – a new 6-seater express chairlift from the base of The Remarkables that will open up access to brand new trails and provide fast laps through Remarks Parks – have been delayed for a year as approval was slow.
“On 6 March, 2019 we received approval to replace the lift. Unfortunately, the notice of approval was too late in the off-season for the construction of Sugar Basin to happen this year.” says NZski’s Paul Adams.
“We strive to meet a high standard and preserve our environment. Therefore we have taken the decision to defer this project until next year.”
The large project at The Remarkables originally scheduled for this summer to be ready for 2019 winter features the entire redevelopment of the Sugar Bowl basin.
This incorporates a new high-speed D-line Doppelmayr 6-seater chairlift starting from the base area and opening trails that were previously harder to access or off-piste.It’s not just replacing the current Sugar Bowl lift, but essentially moving it says Adams.
“We have identified a new pathway up the mountain, creating a whole new trail network, adding to the existing terrain including the four terrain parks on offer.”
The new lift line will become the Sugar Bowl lift. It will take guests from the base area and drop them off at the top of the parks, offering skiers/riders repeatable faster runs through The Stash, Serpentine, Cross fall and below.
It opens up nearly 2.5km of new trails, suited to low intermediate abilities right through to black runs.
Paul says that with snowmaking to be installed as part of the plan, there is greater guarantee of snow coverage.
“It’s exciting for us to be able to access terrain within our ski area that was currently off piste to build on our offering.
This is a whole new side of the mountain to play in! We are also talking about 36 new snowguns in that area of the mountain.
“Development of Sugar Bowl is the next step of our future plan for The Remarkables,” says Paul.
Future developments at The Remarkables – including The Doolans
“Following this major upgrade, we will look to replace the Shadow Basin chairlift with a new high-speed lift which
will position us for further expansion. We’ve always been open about the need to expand the ski area into The Doolans and we will continue to talk with DOC about how we can make this terrain available to our guests in the future. This would increase the skiable terrain of The Remarkables significantly with a trail network developed in what is undoubtedly some of the region’s best terrain.
Paul says the ski field operator is committed to growing these developments sustainably.
“As well as being committed to providing a great experience, from best terrain and facilities to keeping our pricing competitive, we are committed to working with DOC to preserve and enhance the stunning environments we operate within. We firmly believe that through our commitment to native revegetation and predator control, these environments can be better than they would be without us.”