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Report - Chill Factore – Manchester – Apr 2011

sho

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#1
Chill Factore – Manchester – April 2011

Roof topping might be a bit out of fashion at the moment and we may have rinsed our city but occasionally there’s still a chance to crack something with a bit more originality. I'd wanted this one for ages, it didn't seem to have been done since before it went live. Although it’s not the tallest at only 148ft and it doesn’t have the best views it posed all the right challenges. To date it’s the most unique building I have conquered.

Completed in 2007 by Robert-McAlpine and architecturally somewhere between brutalist and post-modern, this beast was the longest and widest indoor snow slope in the UK. In a sense it’s a fully computer controlled micro-climate sustaining a constant -1.5 degrees and able to create its own real snowfall using water vapour and compressed air. The 1632 tonnes of snow is managed using two full sized piste bashers just like in a real ski resort. The centre hosts a further array of poorly simulated extreme sports and a selection of restaurants and ski shops designed to recreate the atmosphere of a European alpine village. Overpriced and full of punters and cool kids, this place is a fail fest but the roof is cool as fuck.

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Access was not the easiest.. there are no internal hatches here. Once up, the walk to the top of the main slope seemed to take a long time and the aluminium construction was bouncy as hell. This isn’t the easiest building to take photos from either due to the angle, it seems to move a lot too.. Not the best pics unfortunately.

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The views over the trafford centre with town in the distance were pretty sweet. It feels pretty exposed at the top and combined with the flimsy metal and the overhanging peak of the structure makes for a fairly unique rooftopping experience.

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It had been a dream for ages to reach the red beacons and watch the motorway shooting past beneath me. Sitting above the artificial clouds knowing people were skiing about below was quite amusing.

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Don’t think I’ll be up here again any time soon though. Sho :thumb
 

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