Indoor ski slope and resort could be coming to Lorton

Fairfax County announced Wednesday that a massive indoor snow sports complex — featuring a competition-level ski slope and luxury hotel — has been proposed for the Lorton landfill site.

“Fairfax Peak” would include a 450,000- square-foot snow sports facility featuring a 1,700-foot ski slope. The summit of the facility would be 280 feet in the air. If approved by the county, Fairfax Peak would be built on part of the landfill site at 9850 Furnace Road in Lorton (see map), close to Workhouse Arts Center, Laurel Hill Golf Course, and Occoquan Regional Park.

The proposal for Fairfax Peak comes from Alpine-X, a Virginia-based subsidiary of the Netherlands-based SnowWorld International B.V. Springfield District Supervisor says the Alpine-X approached the county’s Sports Tourism Task Force in 2016 with the idea. The company then submitted their formal proposal in December 2018.

Artist's drawing of the complex
Wow. (Alpine-X image)

“When Alpine-X came to me in 2016 with a proposal to build an indoor ski facility in Lorton, I knew this could be a great opportunity for the county and the region,” Mount Vernon District Supervisor Dan Storck said in a county press release. “I encouraged the Alpine-X team and county leadership to work together with our office to determine the viability of this project and the possibility of repurposing a closed landfill.”

Map of the proposed complex
Click to enlarge

The project would be a public-private partnership, with the county owning the land and leasing it to Alpine-X. The facility would be the first of its kind in the U.S., according to Alpine-X.

Per the county, other features of Fairfax Peak could include:

  • Multiple ski slopes at approximately a 20-degree angle, including a slope compliant with the Fédération Internationale de Ski’s standards.
  • An area for skiing and snowboarding with a variety of ramps, jumps, rails, boxes and other features, capable for use in snowboarding and freestyle skiing competitions.
  • A bunny slope for beginners, snow tubing run and area for skiers and snowboarders to perform tricks.
  • Restaurants, ski shop and sky bar and terrace at the summit.
  • A 100-plus room luxury hotel at the base of the facility.
  • A gravity-powered, mountain coaster that will slide from the summit to Occoquan Regional Park.
  • A gondola to ferry riders from Occoquan Regional Park and the facility’s base to the summit.

Future additions to the complex could include a water park, a ropes course and “a passive recreation area.”

“The phased development is subject to change based on a variety of factors,” Alpine-X said in its proposal. “But the goal is for establishing a recreational reuse for the landfill areas that have been, or are nearly being capped, while still allowing the landfill, the nearby Covanta power plant, and other ongoing operations to continue relatively unimpeded.”

The county says that should the proposal be accepted, the first phase of the project could be completed in 3-4 years. However the property will need to go through the rezoning process, which would include public hearings, and the final plan would need approval from the Board of Supervisors.

See Fairfax County’s full press release here.

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