Warner plots cable-car route to Hollywood sign

The Hollywood sign in Los Angeles.
The Hollywood sign in Los Angeles.PHOTO: AFP

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Warner has announced plans for a US$100 million (S$135 million) cable car to take tourists from its studio lot to the iconic Hollywood sign, an area increasingly choked by tourist traffic.

The company, one of Tinseltown's "Big Six" film distributors, told city officials on Monday it would put up the entire funding for the "Hollywood Skyway".

The six-minute ride would extend more than 1.6km from Warner's base in Burbank up Mount Lee to a visitor centre near the sign, with pathways to a viewing area, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The studio said the project would "reduce street congestion, improve safety, and ease neighbourhood frustrations".

"Given our close proximity to the north side of the Hollywood sign, we believe we offer a solution that has the least impact on the environment - protecting and preserving (nearby) Griffith Park - and the surrounding residential neighbourhoods," the company added.

The idea has been floated for years but has always hit stumbling blocks.

The project is expected to take about five years to complete .

The landmark was erected in 1923 as "Hollywoodland" to advertise a local real estate development.

It has undergone a number of transformations over the years, including in 1987, when pranksters changed it to "Holywood" to mark the visit of Pope John Paul II.