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View Poll Results: What theme park company or brand should come to the PHX area?
Busch Gardens 5 17.86%
Water Country USA 4 14.29%
SeaWorld 0 0%
Six Flags 9 32.14%
Walt Disney 3 10.71%
Universal 1 3.57%
Herschend Family Entertainment 1 3.57%
Merlin Entertainments 0 0%
Palace Entertainment 0 0%
Village Roadshow 0 0%
Cedar Fair Entertainment 2 7.14%
Other (specify) 3 10.71%
Voters: 28. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 03-24-2013, 11:46 PM
 
Location: Queen Creek, AZ
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I was thinking, if a theme park company were to ever come to the Phoenix area, which one do you think should come?

I personally would like a Busch Gardens theme park here. Just as Busch Gardens Williamsburg is European themed and Busch Gardens Tampa is African-themed, perhaps a Latin American theme (Mexico and Central/South America) would work here. Some possible locations where such a theme park may work include Gilbert, east Mesa, Goodyear, or Buckeye.
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Old 03-25-2013, 02:09 AM
 
Location: Phoenix, Arizona
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Unfortunately, there haven't been any parks built from scratch in the US in a long time. The most recent one was a Hard Rock-owned park that closed shop after two years.
  • Six Flags doesn't build any parks within an 8 hour radius of another park. So that's out.
  • Disney only builds parks in important urban and cultural centers. Phoenix doesn't fit that description.
  • Cedar Fair.. I don't think they've ever built a park from scratch, other than Cedar Point.
  • Universal follows Disney pretty closely when it comes to where they open parks.
  • Herschend is great, but they don't have the resources to build anything from scratch at the moment. They are acquiring new properties left and right, so who knows if they might have the resources in the future.
  • Merlin owns Village Roadshow, but neither are particularly major players in the amusement park industry..
  • Seaworld and Busch are the same company, and both are possibly being acquired by Six Flags, last I heard.
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Old 03-25-2013, 02:28 AM
 
Location: Out there somewhere...a traveling man.
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Wild Life Zoo would make a great theme park. It is already established here and is expanding toward a major zoo based theme park.
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Old 03-25-2013, 02:51 AM
 
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The 60s-70s was the time of the theme park boom. All that has come after has been upgrades pretty much. There is Castles 'n' Coasters in Phoenix, but it is small and has zero room to expand.

I think part of the problem with towns like Miami, Phoenix, and Las Vegas is that they are just too hot for an outdoor theme park. All three of these cities have nothing major in the immediate area. I think heat is why the major companies avoid them. Theme parks are hot with all the asphalt, and hours of walking around during peak sun hours can lead to heat exhaustion. It's bad enough to visit them in cities like Atlanta, Orlando or Dallas. Just imagine what it would be like in 110° F Phoenix.

San Diego doesn't have anything aside from Sea World, but considering how close Anaheim, Valencia and Buena Park are, they can just drive up the I-5 to get to major LA parks (Disneyland, Magic Mountain, Knott's Berry Farm).
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Old 03-25-2013, 04:20 AM
 
10,719 posts, read 19,503,887 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CodyW View Post
Unfortunately, there haven't been any parks built from scratch in the US in a long time. The most recent one was a Hard Rock-owned park that closed shop after two years.
  • Six Flags doesn't build any parks within an 8 hour radius of another park. So that's out.
Really, tell that to Six Flags. Most of it's parks defy that rule and rather easily I might add. Dallas-Houston-San Antonio-New Orleans. Chicago-St. Louis, D.C.-Jersey-Boston. New Orleans closed down after Katrina and Houston's Astroworld shut down but those parks were all within that 8 hour radius so I don't know where you get that information from.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hamtonfordbury View Post
I think part of the problem with towns like Miami, Phoenix, and Las Vegas is that they are just too hot for an outdoor theme park. All three of these cities have nothing major in the immediate area. I think heat is why the major companies avoid them. Theme parks are hot with all the asphalt, and hours of walking around during peak sun hours can lead to heat exhaustion. It's bad enough to visit them in cities like Atlanta, Orlando or Dallas. Just imagine what it would be like in 110° F Phoenix.
It's not true. It has nothing to do with weather. It comes down to cost. Most theme parks were built in the 60's and 70's when it was cheap to do so. And most of these theme parks expanded over time, they were not originally built that way. It simply costs too much money to build a large theme park from scratch. First, you need the land. The land itself is a daunting task. Where are you going to find enough land to build a park that is proximal to a city? More importantly, where are you going to find enough affordable land? A develop can't spend too much buying the land because they still have to develop the park. Second, it costs a lot of money to install the rides, maintain them, design them etc. A major theme park in today's society is 100 hundred million at least realistically speaking.

I think we will ultimately get a theme park but conditions will have to be optimal for it to occur. The economy has to be really strong here to the point that developers think they will get a significant ROI. We will probably have to add another million people to the metro to get to that solid 5-5.5 million people for the city to get real interest.

Last edited by azriverfan.; 03-25-2013 at 04:31 AM..
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Old 03-25-2013, 05:31 AM
 
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Depends on the type of park you want to build. The mega park Six Flags Magic Mountain is on about 200 acres, while Knotts Berry Farm is on a compact 50 acres or so. Disneyland is on a square plot about 2500 feet x 2500 feet, which is about 143 acres. Busch Gardens Tampa, one of the most sprawling zoo theme parks, is 220 acres. I won't count Disney World since it is the size of a city in land holdings, but the actual Magic Kingdom part isn't much different in size from all the other Disney parks.

Compare theme parks to golf courses or shopping malls in size. I think golf courses take up more land, and metro Phoenix has a load of those. If new golf courses can pop up all over the place, I don't see why theme parks can't. A lot of parks are getting rid of rides these days as they erect new ones. Plus there are cheap coaster models that come pre-built. Companies don't have to install the latest Intamin or B&M monster coaster. They can build a few shuttles like Vekoma boomerangs, compact junior coasters and cheap wooden coasters. Considering the average rainfall in Phoenix, I think a park there investing in wooden coasters would be wise. There is plenty of lumber up in the northern part of AZ. Heck NAU's mascot is called the Lumberjacks.

Last edited by Hamtonfordbury; 03-25-2013 at 05:49 AM..
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Old 03-25-2013, 05:42 AM
 
Location: Phoenix, Arizona
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azriverfan. View Post
Really, tell that to Six Flags. Most of it's parks defy that rule and rather easily I might add. Dallas-Houston-San Antonio-New Orleans. Chicago-St. Louis, D.C.-Jersey-Boston. New Orleans closed down after Katrina and Houston's Astroworld shut down but those parks were all within that 8 hour radius so I don't know where you get that information from.
Take a chill pill, alright? Got a little defensive there, didn't you? I heard it years ago. Though, you're right, the east coast parks break that rule.

Regardless, when is the last time Six Flags BUILT a park? 1971. St. Louis. Either way, it's not happening in Phoenix.
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Old 03-25-2013, 06:08 AM
 
462 posts, read 678,934 times
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When Will Arizona Get a Decent Theme Park?

Some good arguments in that thread. I guess they could make up for a somewhat down period mid-summer by being open year round.
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Old 03-25-2013, 09:51 AM
 
Location: Willo Historic District, Phoenix, AZ
3,158 posts, read 5,377,997 times
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The poll needs a "it will never happen, it's too hot here and too close to LA" choice.
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Old 03-25-2013, 10:23 AM
 
701 posts, read 1,051,913 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hamtonfordbury View Post
Depends on the type of park you want to build. The mega park Six Flags Magic Mountain is on about 200 acres, while Knotts Berry Farm is on a compact 50 acres or so. Disneyland is on a square plot about 2500 feet x 2500 feet, which is about 143 acres. Busch Gardens Tampa, one of the most sprawling zoo theme parks, is 220 acres. I won't count Disney World since it is the size of a city in land holdings, but the actual Magic Kingdom part isn't much different in size from all the other Disney parks.

Compare theme parks to golf courses or shopping malls in size. I think golf courses take up more land, and metro Phoenix has a load of those. If new golf courses can pop up all over the place, I don't see why theme parks can't. A lot of parks are getting rid of rides these days as they erect new ones. Plus there are cheap coaster models that come pre-built. Companies don't have to install the latest Intamin or B&M monster coaster. They can build a few shuttles like Vekoma boomerangs, compact junior coasters and cheap wooden coasters. Considering the average rainfall in Phoenix, I think a park there investing in wooden coasters would be wise. There is plenty of lumber up in the northern part of AZ. Heck NAU's mascot is called the Lumberjacks.
You've worked in the biz, haven't you? No one else besides an industry veteran or a roller coaster fanatic would mention Vekoma, Intamin, and B&M by name.
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