Theme Park, Amusement Park and Attractions Industry News

Thunderbolt to strike Coney Island

A new major rollercoaster, Thunderbolt, will be built at New York’s Coney Island for the 2014 season.

Thrilling passengers with speeds of 65 miles per hour (105kmh), the 125ft tall (38m) ride is designed as a one-of-a-kind ‘out and back’ steel coaster featuring a signature 110ft (34m) vertical lift.

The new coaster will sit near the historic B&B Carousell (sic) and new Steeplechase Plaza. The manufacturer, like most new Coney rides in recent years, will be Zamperla, whose sister company Central Amusement International (CAI) already operates the adjacent Luna Park.

“This is going to be the first steel custom rollercoaster in Coney Island since the debut of the Cyclone in 1927,” notes CAI president Valerio Ferrari. Thunderbolt will put back Coney Island on the Olympus of the Amusement Area destination in the World.”

Once riders reach the top of Thunderbolt’s lift hill, the train will be unleashed onto the first vertical drop and then through a series of elements and inversions. Featuring over 2,000ft (600m) of track, the will then make its return through a series of “bunny hills” that will give riders a floating sensation until the train returns back into the station.

Since the passage of the Coney Island rezoning in 2009, the City of New York and CAI have filled over eight acres with rides and attractions – the largest area devoted to amusement park use since 1964.

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