Monday 16 March 2009

Indoor ski resort given the cold shoulder

PLANNING: PLANS FOR a €100 million indoor ski resort and extreme sports centre in Tyrrelstown, Co Dublin have been given the cold shoulder by planners at Fingal County Council.

Dubbed “Snowtopia” by its promoters, the plans features two indoor ski slopes, Ireland’s first indoor ice-climbing area, a separate rock-climbing facility, as well as shops, paintball centre, cafés, restaurants and a cinema.

Refusing permission, planners at Fingal County Council said the ski resort would be “prejudicial” to the possible future expansion of a neighbouring pharmaceutical company.

The scheme’s cinema, according to planners, would also adversely impact on a cinema in the Blanchardstown centre.

Planners also stated that the scheme would lead to the creation of an unsustainable car-dependent development.

Expressing disappointment at the decision, developer Rick Larkin of Twinlite has vowed to appeal the decision to An Bord Pleanála.

Twinlite, responsible for the 2,000-unit Tyrrelstown scheme in north Dublin, had hoped to open the centre in the winter of 2010. They say the scheme will provide employment for over 1,000 people.

The main objectors to the scheme were the IDA, Bristol-Myers Squibb pharmaceutical company, and UCI Cinemas who operate a facility in Blanchardstown.

When the scheme was first unveiled last December Twinlite said it expected up to 1.5 million visitors a year to the development.

Irish Times

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