Close your eyes for a moment and imagine snow skiing in the summer, if only. How we would love to click into our skis and hit the slopes in July. We have come to accept the sad reality that U.S summer skiing is a beautiful dream, and nothing more. However, the near future holds surprising hope. Global cooling! No, not really. What we speak of is the sorcery that is indoor skiing. Sure mountain skiers, “real skiers” as we consider ourselves, have frowned upon indoor skiing. What is that? No mountain, no point… but admit it, you’re curious. We are. We doubt indoor skiing holds the extraordinary promise mountain skiing provides- fresh mountain air and scenic views. Indoor skiing does not offer the breathtaking beauty of the outdoors, but it does offer something the outdoors does not – snow 365 days a year.
There are many indoor ski facilities popping up across the globe, but North America is slow to join the trend. One of the very first indoor snow skiing facilities in North America was built in New Jersey, however it has fallen to bankruptcy and is currently closed. The project was taken over in May of 2011 by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and Triple Five, owner of Mall of America, a promising developer. The skiing facility is part of a much larger project called the American Dream at Meadowlands, which, if completed, is expected to be a huge entertainment destination for New Jersey residents and tourists from around the world, offering not only indoor skiing but an indoor ice rink, an amusement park, a water park, movie theaters, live performing arts, shopping, and dining. It is expected to create up to 35,000 permanent jobs once it is fully operational, as well as attract 55 million annual visitors, generating millions in tax revenues. We hope that Triple Five will be able to get this project back on its feet.
“We selected the name American Dream at Meadowlands because it connotes opportunity,” stated Nader Ghermezian, Chairman, Triple Five. “It represents opportunity for new jobs, to drive tourism, to generate tax revenue and to offer people of all ages a unique place with unparalleled retail, entertainment and attraction options.”
The ski and snowboard park was designed to be 165,000 square feet, 800 feet long, sixteen stories high (about 160 feet), and have 200 feet of roofline. For comparison, Mammoth Mountain, one of the largest ski destinations, has a 3,100- foot vertical rise. The difference is colossal, but considering this place is indoors, it’s definitely worth a try. The facility will also offer professional ski school and extreme snowboarding parks.
We hope Triple Five will get that snow falling and those chair lifts rolling within the next couple years!