COUNCILLORS will consider ambitious plans to create the town’s first-ever ice rink next week.
Entrepreneur Brian Morton is applying for permission to construct a state-of-the-art artificial rink at The Sports Domes, in Seaton Carew.
Mr Morton hopes to put up a third inflatable dome housing the ice rink and would also be used to host sports and cultural events, exhibitions, and ceremonies.
The development could create up to 150 new jobs.
Hartlepool Borough Council’s planning committee are due to decide the plans when it next meets on Wednesday.
The scheme is being recommended for approval by officers.
Mr Morton says he wants to build on the success of the domes that opened in February last year, which house artificial football pitches and a state-of-the-art indoor golf centre.
Speaking when the plans were submitted Mr Morton said: “The success of the Hartlepool Sports Domes since opening has given us great confidence to press ahead with plans for the ice-rink.
“We want to give the people of Hartlepool a venue that is far more than an ice rink, it can also be used for sporting events and competitions.
“A venue of this size and quality is something the people of Hartlepool have been asking about for a long time.”
The proposed “ice dome” would be created to the south of the existing football dome and building on Tees Road, Seaton Carew, which houses a gym, bar and restaurant.
As well as the new ice-rink, measuring around 80-feet by 50-feet, the dome is planned to include a 1,200 seater auditorium, toilets and changing facilities, skate store, and light refreshment cafe.
The council has received five letters of objection and four letters of no objection to the plans.
Objections include concerns over traffic congestion, noise late at night, and disruption to people living near the site.
Council papers state the new dome would be some 700 feet away from the nearest properties, adding: “Given these distances it is not considered that the development will unduly affect any neighbouring residential property in terms of loss of light, outlook, privacy or issues of dominance.”
Planning team leader Jim Ferguson added: “The site is located in Seaton Carew and is an established sports and leisure venue and it is considered that the development, which will support the economic growth of Seaton Carew and its offer as a visitor attraction, is appropriate in this location.”
Another 116 car parking spaces and two coach park bays are also included in the plans.