There is growing backlash surrounding the planned cable car addition to Africa's tallest mountain. Wikipedia Photo.
What normally is a decent trek to the "Roof of Africa", may become a quick cable car ride. In an effort to boost local tourism, Tanzania is planning to build a cable car to the top of Kilimanjaro.
According to Reuters, the installation of the car could increase tourist visits by 50 percent and make the mountain more accessible. Constantine Kanyasu, deputy minister for tourism, cited similar cable car projects in Sweden, Italy, and the Himalayas as inspiration. The project comes at a time in which the country wishes to capitalize on a booming tourism economy. Last year it jumped by 7.13 percent.
The project is still in the early planning stages, so there won’t be any construction happening any time soon. Right now, the Tanzanian government is busy researching potential routes, profitability, and what kinds of environmental impacts it will pose. There are two companies interested in handling the construction: one Chinese and one Western.
However, not everyone is welcoming the project with open arms. There’s been an outcry from local guides and porters, fearing that it will significantly impact their livelihood. A direct route of this kind could eliminate the need for multiple porters, which is how many handle the trek currently. For now, though, everyone will have to climb the mountain by foot.
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