ZooBalloon to fly again next year

The Channel 6 ZooBalloon once offered sweeping views of Philadelphia, but tons of snow rendered it unusable. It was to be retired later this year. (DAN LANTZ)

6ABC and the Philadelphia Zoo have reupped their partnership and allowing the ZooBalloon to fly for yet another year. This season was meant to be the ZooBalloon's final year in the sky (at least in its current incarnation), but word from the station is that it will grace the skyline for the next three seasons, flying daily (weather permitting).

The current balloon will be shipped back to its UK headquarters (as intended) on November 23, with a whole new balloon coming into view spring 2015.

In February of this year, the ZooBallon was deflated because of weather conditions. 

So why bring back the balloon instead of allowing it metaphorically float off to the heavens? "Our belief was that the 2014 season would be the last, but after a complex insurance negotiation, coupled with public support, we believed it was both beneficial for the City and our best option to bring the balloon back," a statement from 6ABC reads. "After a nearly one-year-long insurance settlement process, prompted by the controlled release of the balloon’s helium in February 2014, it became evident that the most responsible option for Philadelphia Zoo was to install a replacement."

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