A sky-high theme park planned for Birmingham is still up in the air – seven years after it was launched with a fanfare.

In 2006, the 650ft high VerTiPlex, costing a whopping £95 million, was proposed for the heart of the city centre.

But building work on the ambitious project never started - and the land on which it was to have stood has been gobbled up by another landmark project.

Now the would-be developers are not saying if the white-knuckle paradise will ever be built.

The ambitious project – named VTP200 – was planned for the Eastside area of Birmingham, next to Millennium Point.

The vertical theme park was designed to consist of five rides including bungee-jumping and a Walk of Fear, during which thrillseekers would walk around the top of the tower with no handrails to grab – supported only by harnesses.

Developers boasted that the project, which included a 250-bedroom hotel and restaurants and bars, could create 650 full-time jobs.

And initial estimates were that it would pull in one million visitors a year.

Less adventurous visitors would be able to go to the top in a lift and have 360 degree panoramic views of up to 30 miles on clear days.

The tower would have been the highest building in Birmingham, loftier than the city’s BT Tower.

How the VerTiPlex would have looked in Birmingham city centre
How the VerTiPlex would have looked in Birmingham city centre
 

It would also have topped Blackpool Tower and the London Eye.

VerTiPlex was officially unveiled in a fanfare of trumpets in September 2007.

At the launch, VTP 200 operations director Richard Pawley said he had toured the world to bring the best thrill-seeking attractions to Birmingham.

Mr Pawley, who had worked at Drayton Manor Park in Tamworth for 28 years, drew his inspiration from blockbuster Hollywood action movies including Towering Inferno, Top Gun and the Bond films.

There were hopes that the theme park would open in 2010 but the scheme stalled because of the worsening economic situation.

However, in October 2009, the developers were in buoyant mood again, insisting that VerTiPlex was ‘still firmly on the drawing board for Birmingham’.

Charles Pettifer, chief executive of VTP Global, said: “We are very much committed to VTP200 in Eastside.

“Our original programme has been delayed due to the wider economic crisis.

Plans showing inside the VerTiPlex
Plans showing inside the VerTiPlex
 

"However, we have made good progress over recent months and hope to be in a position to announce project funding in the New Year.

“We will be making a detailed planning application in Spring 2010 which, assuming a positive outcome, would result in VTP 200 opening to the public in the late summer of 2012.”

The planning application was submitted – and approved.

But it has since lapsed because the land on which the theme park was to be built is now part of Birmingham City University ’s City Centre Campus, which opened four months ago.

Discussions with Birmingham City Council about a possible alternative location have taken place, but not since 2011.

A city council spokeswoman said: “We remain supportive of this project, and look forward to discussing any future proposals should the project promoters identify other sites, with secured funding.”

But a VTP Global spokeswoman said: “We have no statement to make at the present time.”

She declined to say if she thought the tower would ever be built.

Scale graph showing how the VerTiPlex plans measure up to other landmarks
Scale graph showing how the VerTiPlex plans measure up to other landmarks