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Snowflex rental building under construction

March 24, 2009 : Eric Brown

When students set foot onto the Liberty Mountain Snowflex Center for the first time, one attraction will make them feel they are vacationing at a mountain resort. Crews are now constructing the slope’s rental facility, a two-story building composed of wood framing and architectural stone.

“This is the first type of building where we have done anything like this at Liberty,” said Alan Askew, project manager. “It’s wood framing where so much of the [building projects] we do here is metal framing and metal siding. It’s going to be something like you would see out west at a ski resort.”

Along with adequate space for equipment fitting and shelving, the structure will consist of management offices, restrooms, a commons area and exterior decking.

Artist's rendering of future rental facility at Liberty Mountain Snowflex Center.

When patrons are not checking out skis, snowboards or tubes, they can relax with friends in the comfort of the upstairs lounge. There they can enjoy delicious snacks and watch riders glide downhill on Liberty University’s artificial incline.

Both floors will be approximately 4,000 square feet and will hold a total of 100 occupants. A ramp is also being installed to allow wheelchair access to the top level. Askew said the entire project is expected to be completed around the start of summer.

Progress on the slope continues as workers are nearing the end of the initial grading. Lee Beaumont, LU’s director of auxiliary services, said Snowflex tiles will be installed beginning in mid-April. In the meantime, a retaining wall is being built for the 11-foot quarter pipe, a feature enthusiasts will encounter as they approach the slope’s final section.

“The weather over the past few months has really slowed down this particular project,” Beaumont said. “When you are grading on the side of a mountain in the middle of winter, rain and snow are not your friends. However, with the approach of spring we now are able to put the hammer down and will complete the project in short order.”