The world’s tallest roller coaster will bookend one of the world’s largest Ferris wheels when the two join a new entertainment megacomplex in taking over the cityscape in Orlando, FL, developers have announced.
The Skyscraper at SKYPLEX will be a vertical rollercoaster that will rise 570 feet above Orlando and complement the nearby Orlando Eye, the 425-foot-tall Ferris wheel that is scheduled to open later this year, developers announced Thursday (June 5).
The Polercoaster will be a vertical rollercoaster with standard coaster-length tracks.
The new attraction, called a Polercoaster, is a vertical rollercoaster with standard coaster-length tracks in "a very small footprint,” said Michael Kitchen, president of US Thrill Rides, the Orlando-based company that created the ride.
The Skyscraper will reach speeds up to 65 mph on its approximately 1-mile track, with a capacity of 1,000 passengers per hour.
Adding to Orlando's Attractions
SThe $200 million SKYPLEX project is being developed by David and Joshua Wallack, owners of Mango's Tropical Cafe Orlando and Mango's Tropical Cafe South Beach.
The Wallacks were seeking additional acreage for valet parking for the Mango project in late 2012 when US Thrill Rides contacted them to gauge interest in building the world's first Polercoaster.
Intrigued, the developers acquired five contiguous sites on 12 acres of land, with 300 front feet on International Drive near SeaWorld, Universal Studios and four other destination theme parks.
“We’re extremely excited about creating a record-breaking, must-try attraction on International Drive,” said Joshua Wallack, Mango’s Tropical Café chief operating officer.
The project, slated to break ground in 2015 and scheduled to open in 2016, will be 495,000 square feet on 12 acres near International Drive and Lake Road.
Design for the project is by HHCP, a global architectural firm based in Orlando. Euforria, a construction management division of Winter Park Construction in Winter Park, FL., will handle the construction. Developers expect the project to create 800–1,000 jobs.
SKYPLEX will be completely indoors—a first for this type of entertainment facility in Central Florida—and feature billiards, video games, a bar, simulators, a high-speed go-cart track, retail shops, and a 1,500-space parking garage with a valet parking option.
For those who want only to take in the view, an observation deck 535 at the top of the area's tallest structure will be accessible by the tallest glass elevators in the region.
"It’s exciting for our tourism community to see this type of investment being made to continuously raise the bar on the dining and entertainment experiences we offer across our destination," said George Aguel, president and CEO of Visit Orlando.
Orange County has yet to approve the entertainment complex, but Joshua Wallack is confident there is support for SKYPLEX, according to News13 in Orlando.
Because of the structure's height, the Federal Aviation Administration also must also sign off on the project.
"We don't anticipate any issues with the airports, but that will be up to the FAA to decide," Kitchen told News13.