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Giant fans that can blast winds up 175 mph create a cushion of air for indoor skydivers at iFLY.
Jax Daily Record Thursday, Jun. 8, 201712:00 PM EST

iFLY indoor skydiving could land next door to Jacksonville Topgolf

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The iFLY indoor skydiving venue is exploring a site in Jacksonville next to Topgolf, but the timing is up in the air.

“The Jacksonville site is not a confirmed location yet,” a spokeswoman with the Edelman agency, representing iFLY, said last week.

Landowner Chip Skinner said he had inquiries about the site from an iFLY representative.

“We’ve had discussions with them, but we have no agreement,” he said.

Duke Addison and Amanda Kinkade with Addison Commercial Real Estate Inc. are representing iFLY’s site search.

“We will know more in the next couple of weeks, but I am not at liberty to disclose anything,” Addison said.

Addison said the Skinner site “is of high interest by our client.” Because of its height, it needs only 1-2 acres, he said.

Calling itself “the experiential entertainment company that created modern indoor skydiving,” iFLY developed technology that creates a wall-to-wall air cushion in a flight chamber.

The air cushion is generated by giant fans.

It started in 1998 as SkyVenture LLC and opened its first indoor skydiving facility in 1999. It then opened opened three more through 2005 and rebranded as iFLY, keeping SkyVenture as its design and manufacturing company.

The offices for parent iFLY Corporate Holdings Inc. is based in Austin, Texas.

Its website says bodyflight is one of the fastest growing sports in the world.

The Tampa Bay Times reported a year ago about the iFLY planned next to Topgolf in Brandon. It said the company’s 50 locations worldwide have entertained more than 7 million fliers.

Florida sites are in Orlando, Fort Lauderdale and Brandon.

The Times reported that iFLY facilities feature a vertical wind tunnel powered by giant fans that can generate up to 175 mph winds, with the force adjusted for a participant’s body weight.

The iFLY Orlando site says that prices start at $69.95 for two flights. Each session is 60 seconds, although the entire iFLY first-time experience takes about 90 minutes from start to finish.

The $699.95 party package covers 24 flights shared by up to 12 people and 12 video clips from the flight session.

Participants are trained in an on-site classroom and provided a jumpsuit, helmet, goggles and earplugs. An instructor will accompany rookies.

When iFLY was going into the San Diego area, a news report said it was a $10 million attraction, “minus the thrill and danger of parachuting from a plane.”

A company spokesman said then that the three-floor, 70-foot-high facility would consist of a 48-foot-high wind tunnel that was 14 feet in diameter and capable of handling 12 people every 30 minutes.

The building was designed with an observation deck, conference room and a party room for birthday and group events. It expected to hire 36 employees.

Family and group packages are offered, as well as banks of time for people wanting to practice their skydiving techniques.

The iFly site says it is for participants ages 3 through 103.

[email protected]

@MathisKb

(904) 356-2466

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