Ski Travel: A Piece of Dubai on LI

imageMost New Yorkers would probably file indoor ski mountains among “things we never knew we needed.” But if developers have their way, the NYC metro area will soon be home to not one, but two of these modern monstrosities.

The revamped New Jersey Meadowlands complex is set to open an indoor slope later this year near Giants Stadium. Now comes word that developers plan to bring another enclosed slope to Long Island.

A group of investors have proposed a $2 billion entertainment complex–that would also include an artificial lake, indoor water park and a winery–on a former defense facility now owned by the town of Riverhead.

Conservation groups fear the car traffic brought in by such a major development will damage the nearby Pine Barrens forest, while other locals point out that the proposal just seems ridiculous.

Mitch Pally, an attorney for the proposed resort, tries to emphasize the project’s diversity but concedes most of the questions he is asked concern the ski dome.

“Americans are very parochial,” he said. “If we don’t have one in this country, we assume they don’t exist. There are over 50 of them operating in the world today.”

Of course, most of these are in places like Dubai, Belgium and Australia–locales that lack mountains, snow or both. New York may not be a powder paradise, but is there really such a demand for fake slopes?

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