The Steel City's mountain biking boom

An urban bike park, a mountain biking trail and even a national snow sports centre could be on the cards.

Sheffield Council sets its sites on major outdoor activity centre to the hub of ‘The Outdoor City’ project.

The existing Parkwood Springs mountain bike trails and a dual slalom now attract around 10,000 visits a year. There is a purpose-built 2km mountain bike circuit there. Earlier this year a dual slalom was added to the main trail. There are plans to link to popular trails North of the site at Grenoside and Wharncliffe Woods.

Sheffield City Council has today launched a development brief for the former Sheffield Ski Village 12.5 hectare site, part of the wider Parkwood Springs site on the edge of the city centre.

The Parkwood site has been empty since the former Sheffield Ski Village was closed in 2012.

An initial study shows there is certainly an opportunity to create a commercially viable proposal at Parkwood.  The Council – which cannot fund such proposals itself – is now looking for investors and developers to put forward proposals.

The council wants to attract an investor to transform the site as the “jewel in the crown” in Sheffield’s Outdoor City, creating a destination of national significance and helping Sheffield to gain a reputation as a leading destination for people seeking “outdoor adventure, city culture and rural escapes”.

To access the full development brief, go to the Sheffield City Council website.

Councillor Leigh Bramall, deputy leader of Sheffield City Council and cabinet member for business and economy, said: “Sheffield has higher than average participation rates across various outdoor activities and an annual £93m spend on outdoor trips and equipment. Equally, there are not many sites, in the middle of a city like this.

“This shows we’re offering somebody the perfect opportunity to create a world-leading urban, outdoor attraction which embodies Sheffield’s standing as The Outdoor City.”

The Council is seeking expressions of interest by 12noon on Friday 7 April 2017 and will then invite a preferred bidder to purchase a long lease with the intention of developing, financing and operating Parkwood.