Balloon cleared for take-off

  • Flying high: the balloon would carry up to 30 passengers 400ft into the air

A helium balloon targeted at tourists has been cleared for take-off.

Planning officials have approved View Bermuda Ltd’s project to install a tethered balloon in Southampton, which will take visitors hundreds of feet into the air for a bird’s-eye view of Bermuda.

The planning assessment for the project said: “The proposed tethered HiFlyer balloon will be a unique opportunity for the island and has been designed to make use of existing infrastructure with minimal work required to install

“It will affect people of the area and be marketed as another experience for tourists to enjoy during their stay in Bermuda.”

According to planning documents, the balloon would be installed on a property on Sea Express Lane, next to the Rockaway Ferry stop.

The balloon will have a diameter of 128ft and carry passengers in a 25ft basket.

The altitude of the balloon will be controlled by a large winch on the landing platform.

The application states that the balloon would go no higher than 400ft above sea level, carrying as many as 30 passengers.

In order to build a landing pad, a retaining wall will have to be constructed, but the plans say the retaining wall will be hidden by hibiscus.

The application also includes a snack shop and ticket office made out of a modified shipping container and an outdoor seating area.

The site would include parking for six cars and 16 bikes, but the application suggested that any overflow could use the nearby Rockaway ferry stop for parking.