THE Snow Dome plan for North Star, first revealed by the Adver last March, is still on the cards.
Coun Keith Williams, cabinet member for leisure and corporate services, admitted yesterday that the ambitious plan was very much in their sights.
“It is something which is still being pursued,” he said. “We are still discussing it, and there are a number of other things out there as well which we are considering.”
Urban Ski have been in discussions with Swindon Borough Council about the idea since July 2007. They want to create an indoor Snowdome which could house six slopes to be used by both skiers and snowboarders.
There will be a bob-sleigh run, family snow-play and tobogganing, a number of mountain-chalet restaurants, a ski club and ski school and a 1,200 capacity car park.
If built the snow dome would have 'comfortable' ski conditions in a temperature of plus 10 degrees centigrade, there would be a 175m diameter ski deck with a descent of 13 storeys – which would provide an equivalent straight-down ski run of 650m.
When talks begun between Urban Ski and Swindon Borough Council, the company was asked to look into if the North Star site could comfortably accommodate the Snowdome and the proposed university.
Its master planners concluded that the two facilities could easily fit onto the available site – with a larger than expected buffer zone planned between the two, style restaurants, a ski club and ski school and a 1,200 capacity car park.
When the Adver first reported the story, a spokesman for Urban Ski said: “The company’s aim is to provide a unique Snow Dome experience, a one-stop destination for alpine sports and leisure that will become an international attraction bringing thousands of visitors, of all ages, the year round.
“The Snow Dome will help regenerate this area of Swindon by developing the site, providing jobs and increasing the use of services.”
The nearest ski centre with similar facilities earmarked for Swindon in the Xscape centre in Milton Keynes.