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In an unexpected twist in the decade old saga of North America’s first indoor snow centre, part of the American Dream complex in the Meadowlands in New Jersey.
The long saga of this development began more than a decade ago with a company called The Mills Corporation building a giant retail and leisure mall, then called Xanadu and with a $3 billion dollar price tag.
The complex incorporates the first indoor snow slope in North America to be actually built – it was completed and tested with snow made indoors in 2009 but never opened to the public – as part of the vast development close to Manhattan. Ironically the structure was damaged by heavy natural snow accumulating on its roof in the severe winter of 2010-11.
However with the economic crash, Mills Corporation (which had also built the Xanadu indoor snow centre in Madrid, Spain) went bust and the project, with more than $2 billion spent, was moth balled while a new operator was found.
That operator has over the past year or so been a company called Triple Five which runs many of North America’s leading and most successful shopping malls.
They have just announced an agreement with DreamWorks Animation to build a theme park on the site that will feature characters from DreamWorks films, including Shrek, Kung Fu Panda and Madagascar. The indoor ski slope still appears to be part of the latest variant on this epic development.
"American Dream at Meadowlands is poised to become a one-of-a-kind retail and entertainment destination in North America," Jeffrey Katzenberg, CEO, DreamWorks Animation, said in a company release . "We look forward to working with Triple Five Worldwide to incorporate DreamWorks Animation characters, storytelling and technology into a unique and innovative family entertainment experience at the venue."
No time scale or final price tag has been put on completion of the project.