News and information – Celebrate 120 years of the Cable Car and go for gold
On February 22, 1902, the Wellington Cable Car opened and began transporting Wellingtonians from Lambton Quay to Kelburn – nearly three million trips later, anyone can join in the celebrations.
There will be plenty of trips down memory lane, cake for afternoon commuters, a large sign reflecting the history of the iconic cable car will be unveiled in the main terminal, but a collaboration with the Wellington Chocolate Factory ( WCF) will really put fun on the funicular.
The 1,500 limited edition 120th anniversary dark chocolate and salted caramel bars will be available at Cable Car, WCF, Zealandia and select Experience Wellington locations, with 120 golden tickets to discover inside – giving lucky winners a free ride on the Car cable and price exchangeable at the ticket office.
Mayor Andy Foster says the cable car has served the city well for so many years, both as a tourist attraction but also as a daily means of transport for hundreds of commuters and students – and now for dogs!
“Not only is the cable car an iconic part of the capital, it has also been a sustainable and reliable means of transport for 120 years, so celebrating this massive achievement is well deserved for the car and its many crews.”
To further commemorate the event, the cable car will launch a membership product offering commuters unlimited access to the cable car for three months.
The cable car’s general manager, Cesar Piotto, said that the cable car has not only created thousands of great experiences, but has been a success from a transportation perspective. The membership product is another initiative to make travel more accessible and affordable for Wellington residents.
“Most Wellington residents and many Kiwis and international visitors will have fond memories of the cable car, whether as a passenger, at an event or even as staff – and we want this year’s celebrations honor that nostalgic sentiment with a nod to a classic favorite, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
“So hop on the Willy Wonka-esque bandwagon and find yourself one of 120 gold tickets to commemorate each year of service – then get a free ride on us and create a brand new keepsake.”
Construction began in 1899 as transport demand in the region increased with population growth, and through two world wars, plagues and plague, renovations and an assortment of challenges, it withstood the test of time – and will make many more trips in the future.