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Cancelled theme park projects you wish had come to fruition

Matt N

Well-Known Member
Hi guys. Some of you may have seen that I posted some concept art from a past Six Flags Dubai proposal (if you haven’t, here it is: http://www.themeparx.com/six-flags-dubai/), and posting this got me thinking of all of the various cancelled theme park projects that I would really have loved to have seen come to fruition. So my question to you is; which theme park projects do you wish had come to fruition?

Well, one of my answers is the Six Flags Dubai concept that I linked to above, as I feel that the park would have been absolutely stunning had it materialised. However, I have a few more that I would have loved to have seen materialise:
  • Universal Hollywoodland: Now, this park would basically have been a European version of the Universal Studios parks that would have been built in Krefeld, Germany (not too far from Movie Park Germany). It would have featured various different attractions and IPs, and being a huge fan of Universal Orlando, I would have loved to have seen a version built closer to home! Here’s a ReviewTyme video about it if you want to learn more:
  • Legend Court: Many of you probably haven’t ever heard of this project, and I only stumbled across it while reading through some old issues of the RCCGB’s Airtime magazine. However, I think it would have been greatly exciting had it been built; the developers described it as an “all-weather theme park” and wanted it to attract 2.7million visitors per year (for reference, that would make it the most visited theme park in the UK by some distance based on 2018’s numbers!), with the project costing £750million. It would have been built in Magor (a small town near Newport in Wales) on 800 acres of farmland, and was described as “Britain’s biggest theme park”. I think a big-scale indoor theme park is something that would work really well here in Britain, what with our climate, and I would personally have loved to have had such a major theme park less than 1 hour from my house! Here are a few articles about the proposed project if you want more info: (The Independent: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/giant-theme-park-to-create-6500-jobs-1148355.html) (BBC News: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/611433.stm) (WalesOnline: https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/major-projects-wales-green-light-15015537 (Interestingly, this one also talks about another cancelled theme park themed to some 80s TV show called SuperTed.))
  • Many cancelled projects in Dubai: Now, I did already mention Six Flags Dubailand above, but there are also many other cancelled UAE projects that I would have loved to have seen become a reality, and I think the story of Dubai as far as theme parks go is a rather sad one. Particular mentions I would have loved to have seen include Universal Studios Dubailand, and the F1-X Theme Park that would reportedly have contained another really fast coaster to rival Formula Rossa.
But do you guys have any other cancelled theme park projects that you would have loved to have seen built?
 
Blackpool Pleasure Beach's Intamin (probably) Strata coaster that was rumoured going to be built for around £25million in 2003ish.
It was going to be built on a pier and head out to sea via launch, top hat and back (really not sure if it could have operated even at the same rate as the Big One due to winds but who knows).

I saw some rendered images a few years back, but can't find them now. The pier would have connected to the park and be a bridge for the coaster over the promenade road.

There are also rumours the 3 coloured markings on the promenade aligned with the bridge over Watson Road are in fact footers for the coaster or pier but I've not found a reliable source to confirm this is actually the case at all so make of it what you will. I thought it was ridiculous but quite a few people who have no skin in the game have said that is in fact is true. Considering the bunker building that I have seen for Stealth, and where that is located under the top hat, I'm not sure this was all feasible at the time with the technology at hand, but perhaps Intamin could have made this work.

Screenshot 2020-05-27 at 13.27.07.png

Had Geoffrey Thompson lived on maybe it would have happened somehow.
It definitely would have put BPB on the map a bit more than it was in the 2000s. Considering how loved Top Thrill Dragster still is (I've not ridden that yet but I love Stealth) a BPB strata coaster possibly wouldn't have been such a crazy long term investment at all even if it seems that way now.
 
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Howie

Active Member
Ooh this is an easy one - the Alton Towers cross-valley woodie. I wanted that thing so bad. It was gonna be epic. It was gonna be Wardley's masterpiece. I know for a fact that this was not just a pipe dream - it almost happened, it really did. It was gonna be an Intamin plug-and-play, just like Colossos .. only bigger. Blueprints were drawn up, concept art was created, the main selling point was simply gonna be "The UK's longest, tallest, fastest wooden roller coaster". No gimmicks, no dark theme, no bs, just a big-ass woodie.
I had a Tussauds annual pass at the time and I'd often bunk off work for an afternoon and sneak off to the Towers to see if I could get an inside scoop, and I did see marker balloons along the planned route, I saw clearance work going on in preparation, I saw dozens of trees marked with red X's throughout the area and I even saw a planning application for major construction work stapled to a post.
The project was never 'refused' planning permission, the application was withdrawn. I guess somebody somewhere decided that it was just too much/too expensive.

And we got Rita instead. 😭

But just think, what could have been..
A mash up of El Toro, The Voyage and Boulder Dash in my home park.
😥
 

Matt N

Well-Known Member
Ooh this is an easy one - the Alton Towers cross-valley woodie. I wanted that thing so bad. It was gonna be epic. It was gonna be Wardley's masterpiece. I know for a fact that this was not just a pipe dream - it almost happened, it really did. It was gonna be an Intamin plug-and-play, just like Colossos .. only bigger. Blueprints were drawn up, concept art was created, the main selling point was simply gonna be "The UK's longest, tallest, fastest wooden roller coaster". No gimmicks, no dark theme, no bs, just a big-ass woodie.
I had a Tussauds annual pass at the time and I'd often bunk off work for an afternoon and sneak off to the Towers to see if I could get an inside scoop, and I did see marker balloons along the planned route, I saw clearance work going on in preparation, I saw dozens of trees marked with red X's throughout the area and I even saw a planning application for major construction work stapled to a post.
The project was never 'refused' planning permission, the application was withdrawn. I guess somebody somewhere decided that it was just too much/too expensive.

And we got Rita instead. 😭

But just think, what could have been..
A mash up of El Toro, The Voyage and Boulder Dash in my home park.
😥
Where was it mentioned that the woodie would have been an Intamin, out of interest? There was actually a planning application filed in March 2003, and it was compared to Megafobia in terms of noise levels as opposed to Colossos or Balder (the only existing pre-fabs at the time), so combining that with the fact that John Wardley had expressed desire to build a traditional woodie as opposed to things like RMC hybrids, for example, and I’m not really sure whether it would have been a pre-fab. I could potentially see a standard Intamin woodie, but I’m not sure if Wardley would have wanted a pre-fab, as he was very vocal about traditional woodies.

As for the layout, the drops were said to be “near to or exceeding 200ft”, but the actual layout itself only really consisted of the two huge drops, with not an awful lot else. The project was eventually believed to have been withdrawn due to the locals complaining about the proposed noise or the damage to the environment. TowersTimes has a really informative page about the cross-valley woodie here:https://www.towerstimes.co.uk/history/the-drawing-board/wooden-coaster/

I do agree with you that it would still have been absolutely monumental had it been built, though, and thanks for sharing your memories in such depth @Howie!
 

Matt N

Well-Known Member
The London Resort we could have got instead of the one we may get.
The London Resort is still intended to be on a similar sort of scale to the one announced in 2012, as far as I’m aware, so what elements of the first iteration do you miss, out of interest?
 

00:30 - 02:43: This was an interesting one, but there could've been a 1991 Schwartzkopf steel sit-down coaster with three lift hills and would've been similar to Lisebergbanan, located roughly where Th13teen is now. I never knew this one but it always interested me if this could have opened and if so, how would that have changed Alton Towers future plans, like Rita and Th13teen and of course, Corkscrew's future
 

roomraider

Best Topic Starter
This is a fairly weird one but something that only twigged for me a few weeks ago when looking through old RCT files and It finally clicked.

Its a fairly well known curiosity that in 2002 before Thope Park settled on Colossus they looked at putting in a B&M launched coaster on the site. A plan that can be seen here
ThorpeBM1.png
Source with other images and ditched plans: https://www.southparks.co.uk/history/the-drawing-board/alternative-plans/

Now the design in that image is very rough (I mean look at that cobra roll).

The second part of this story comes from John Wardley. Way back in the early 2000s John put up a zip file containing a number of roller coaster designs buillt in RCT1 on his website. At the time these were actually password protected but someone cracked that password and the designs were shared widely amongst the RCT community at the time.

Until last week it never twigged that one of these designs was actually a mock up of the ride shown in the plans above which clears up some of the weirdness in that image.
ThorpeBM2.jpg
Obviously its still a rough approximation of the ride layout but it shows the hill over the water was to be a zero-g-roll and the oddly twisted hills in the plans are actually corkscrews. While not an amazing looking ride by any account really it would have been an interesting alternative to the Colossus we have now.
 
Disneyland Resort London.

With Disney deeming the UK as too hilly quite early on in the consideration for the locations of a European resort we never stood much of a chance.
Many people however make the misconception it rains more in the UK than Paris. Not so in London if you care to look at stats.

Although location wise for attracting Europeans from all over with regards to travel to a central location, I guess Paris was ultimately a somewhat better place for the late 80s, early 90s (when it was built).

Now though with cheap flights I think a Disneyland Resort in London would have done pretty well. Considering other leisure markets such as Formula 1 actually charging far more for the UK grand prix tickets than anywhere else in the world I think London could have possibly eclipsed Disney Paris in say ticket prices but thus also in revenue for the company in the long term.

I'd probably would have been there near enough every weekend if it had been built more local to myself.
 

Hyde

I Lied About My Age!
Staff member
Moderator
Social Media Team
This is a fairly weird one but something that only twigged for me a few weeks ago when looking through old RCT files and It finally clicked.

Its a fairly well known curiosity that in 2002 before Thope Park settled on Colossus they looked at putting in a B&M launched coaster on the site. A plan that can be seen here
View attachment 8407
Source with other images and ditched plans: https://www.southparks.co.uk/history/the-drawing-board/alternative-plans/

Now the design in that image is very rough (I mean look at that cobra roll).

The second part of this story comes from John Wardley. Way back in the early 2000s John put up a zip file containing a number of roller coaster designs buillt in RCT1 on his website. At the time these were actually password protected but someone cracked that password and the designs were shared widely amongst the RCT community at the time.

Until last week it never twigged that one of these designs was actually a mock up of the ride shown in the plans above which clears up some of the weirdness in that image.
View attachment 8408
Obviously its still a rough approximation of the ride layout but it shows the hill over the water was to be a zero-g-roll and the oddly twisted hills in the plans are actually corkscrews. While not an amazing looking ride by any account really it would have been an interesting alternative to the Colossus we have now.
I never knew about the John Wardley RCT files, let alone he'd "leak" a rumored plan so openly. W I L D.
 

roomraider

Best Topic Starter
I never knew about the John Wardley RCT files, let alone he'd "leak" a rumored plan so openly. W I L D.
I still have copies of all 5 files. Which include 2 alton towers woodie plans, 2 Thorpe Park Steel coasters and a Thorpe Park woodie. All of which I assume were discussed as options. They are all pretty rudimentary early rct models but give a rough idea of ideas they were throwing around.
 

Hyde

I Lied About My Age!
Staff member
Moderator
Social Media Team
I still have copies of all 5 files. Which include 2 alton towers woodie plans, 2 Thorpe Park Steel coasters and a Thorpe Park woodie. All of which I assume were discussed as options. They are all pretty rudimentary early rct models but give a rough idea of ideas they were throwing around.
If you wouldn't mind sharing - would love to check them out!

As to other projects that were scrapped - the TTD original train design was pretty bad ass. Horrible idea in hind sight for adding a large spoiler and weight to the back of the train, but certainly made the coaster photogenic at opening!

 

Howie

Active Member
Where was it mentioned that the woodie would have been an Intamin, out of interest?
Can't remember exactly - but Towerstimes and Towersalmanac was where I used to hang out back then, and it was almost universally agreed that, based on the information we had, Wardley's Woodie was all but confirmed to be an Intamin prefab. Those plans shown in the Towerstimes article are (or certainly were) available to view in full somewhere. It was an exciting time to be an Alton fan boy back then.
Oh how times change.
 

Matt N

Well-Known Member
Can't remember exactly - but Towerstimes and Towersalmanac was where I used to hang out back then, and it was almost universally agreed that, based on the information we had, Wardley's Woodie was all but confirmed to be an Intamin prefab. Those plans shown in the Towerstimes article are (or certainly were) available to view in full somewhere. It was an exciting time to be an Alton fan boy back then.
Oh how times change.
Ah right. I may have to have a look through some old Towers forums, although the oldest posts I can seem to find on TowersTimes date back to 2004; thanks for the heads up @Howie!
EDIT: It would seem that Alton Towers Almanac’s forum is now completely inaccessible, and some very strange edits to the site have been made recently; take a look: http://www.towersalmanac.com/

I’ll have a look at TowersTimes to see if I can unearth any more info...
 
for me its 'Nature wonder world' also known as 'Grand Canyon park' in The Netherlands

Planned by Jean Gelissen - Founder of Toverland, for Limburg (not that far from Toverland).

Reading about its plans - it sounded like it would have been Toverland's 'Disneysea' equivalent - and based on how well Toverland is themed and how close it's projects resemble it's concept art so closely, this would have been an exciting prospect!

there were plans to include du-du-du a Vekoma tilt coaster themed to Mount Everest! Also a coaster that looked from the artwork strongly like a dueling RMC themed around the grand Canyon!

I also liked their overall theme of the '7 wonders of the natural world' - a unique and exciting angle for theming.


 
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Being from Essex originally this is one that always stood out for me as a disappointing cancellation even if i never actually believed it would ever get built. The idea of such a coaster 30 mins from my house had shivers running down my spine at the time.

 

Nick13

New Member
Back in the mid-90’s there were plans for a Warner Bros Movie World Park and film studios to be built in Hillingdon, close to the M25 & M40, and 20 mins drive from Thorpe Park. They struggled to get planning permission approved and the project was dropped in 1997. I grew up nearby and remember there was a lot of opposition to the project from locals at the time, who are now facing much worse disruption with HS2 being built across the same location...

They were apparently going to search for a new location somewhere between London and Birmingham but that obviously didn’t come to anything and we saw the Madrid park open in 2002 instead.

The park would have brought some much needed competition to the Tussauds / Merlin parks here in the UK and likely a couple more B&M’s as well!

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/hollywood-heads-for-hillingdon-1318871.html
 
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