Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Miracle Strip @ Pier Park Shows Off New Starliner Coaster Animation

Plans continue to move forward in the quest to see the famous Starliner rebuilt at the all-new Miracle Strip @ Pier Park.  The park is opening next month and has already made it clear that they intend to rebuild the Starliner in 2015.  Now with a new animation of the coaster released, we're able to get a much more clear idea of the park's plans.

The first thing that I noticed is that the new Starliner is obviously being designed by Great Coasters International!  The second thing is that in order for the ride to fit in the new park, the lift hill and drop had to be turned 90 degrees from the main section of the ride.

That means the new Starliner (or Starliner 2.0 as the park has called it) will not be an exact replica or 'rebuilt' at Miracle Strip @ Pier Park as it was when it moved to Cypress Gardens.  Purists will also notice that while the ride's track generally follows the same layout, it's been amped up a bit using GCI's trademark moves.  There's also some changes to the size of the air hills on the return run, with one larger one appearing to replace some of the smaller bumps.

With the lift hill turned that also means there's a curving first drop, one of the larger changes that came with the rearrangement. 

I would think the new Starliner would have Millennium Flyer trains
You could really say that the new Starliner will be "inspired" by the original John Allen design, but looks to be a brand new ride from GCI from the ground up.  With the cost of actually using the old structure, trains, etc - I can't say I'm surprised the park just went with a totally new ride.  For comparison, here's a link to a point of view of Starliner when it was at Cypress Gardens.

There's also some similarities between the new Starliner and White Lightning at Fun Spot, another GCI ride in Florida.  I would guarantee changes will be made to the design before it goes up, hopefully as planned in 2015, but this sure is exciting news!