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Remodeling Hong Kong's Peak Tram

Enthusiasts have been racing to get one last ride before the Peak Tram is closed for renovations. In part to cut down on waiting times, the tram will be out of service Monday due to a six month makeover.

Cedric Yu said that he hadn’t taken the tram in years and called it a collective memory of Hong Kongers and a part of the city’s history. He said, "Taking the Peak Tram just right now reminds me about my childhood memories."

In 1888, Hong Kong, then a British colony of Hong Kong, began operating the Peak Tram to transport people up Victoria Peak. Original carriages were made from varnished timber. They could hold 30 people in three classes.

The tram has been through many changes since then. The Peak Tram's fifth generation, which has a burgundy exterior with varnished wood interiors and 120 passengers, was launched in 1989.

"The Peak Tram... has evolved and transformed itself into an essential mode of transportation to a very popular tourist attraction, Hong Kong," stated May Tsang (general manager of Hong Kong Peak Tramways).

She said that the company will invest more than 700 million Hong Kong dollars ($90million) in the upgrade of the system, tram cars, and renovations to the terminus.

The tram cars can carry more passengers, increasing capacity from 120 to 210.

The makeover is welcomed by Alan Cheung, former president of Hong Kong Collectors Society, and Peak Tram enthusiast.

He said, "Anything that can last for more than 100 years - that's not easy." They must preserve this treasure.

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