Join us here at TowersStreet as we round-up the detail of the development of the Rollercoaster Restaurant within the former Air shop…
A planning application was received by Staffordshire Moorlands District Council on 16th April 2015:
“Two storey rear and single storey front extension to the existing “Air Shop” and installation of a new themed entrance feature”
When will it open?
The plans were approved on 17th June 2015, and construction started during the closed season of 2015/2016 with the Air Shop being closed during the last week of the theme park season. The restaurant is due to on Friday 13th May 2016 .
So what exactly is planned?
The proposals involve the extension of the existing Air Shop building to allow for conversion of the space into a new restaurant. There will be a two storey extension to the rear of the building for the kitchen and back of house areas, and a single storey extension to the front to house a new retail area. It is rumoured that the new restaurant will be a “Foodloop” style eatery, where guests order food using a touchscreen computer which is then delivered to tables by a rollercoaster rail style system (similar to that seen at Europa Park).
What will be the difference to now?
Guests will exit the Air ride via the stairs as usual, but will be diverted to the right upon reaching the top, and enter a new retail area to house the on-ride photo desks and shop. The current shop entrance will be the entrance to the restaurant, with the new shop entrance to the left of the current doors. The new extension will not exceed the tree canopy, and will match the existing style of the building.
Will they have to build in the wooded areas?
The two storey extension for back of house will be built on stilts to maintain the existing floor level and preserve the plantlife underneath the area. Two trees will be removed due to their size, but other than this there is deemed no adverse effect on the nearby woodland.
What will be on the menu?
Alton Towers have released some sample menus for the Rollercoaster Restaurant, offering ‘Thrills, Spills and Grills’. They focus heavily on burgers and steaks during the daytime period, along with a series of desserts, however the evening menu is more expansive. The new restaurant will offer starters as well as a larger range of main courses during the evening.
What else has been said?
There were no objections from Alton Parish Council, nor Historic England. It is estimated that 48 job opportunities will come from the development. The delegated report which accompanied the approval states:
“The proposal will help to re-brand and re-fresh an existing tourist facility, which in turn will hopefully make it a more attractive proposition for customers.”
What does it look like?
Works have been ongoing over the closed season, and continue to take place within the building. From the outside, hoarding covers the glass frontage and there are hints to the new theming feature.
Stay with us here at TowersStreet as we follow the development, and bring you news as we get it. Do you have any thoughts on the change? Discuss the project over on our Talk forums, and follow our social media channels on Facebook and Twitter for updates. You can also visit our dedicated attraction page for more information about the restaurant.