Saturday, July 9, 2016

Legoland Still Committed to Opening a New York Park Location

Despite having to change course last year and find another potential location, Merlin Entertainments is still committed to pursuing a brand new Legoland theme park in the state of New York.

The latest plan calls for a park to be built on 523 acres of land that would be purchased in Goshen, New York - with the park filling up about 150 of those acres.  The initial development would include the theme park along with a 250 room hotel, but future years could see an aquarium and other attractions added - just like at the other Legoland theme parks.

Merlin recently held an 'open house' of sorts for their New York plan, drawing several thousand local residents to learn more about the park.  There were plenty of lego models on display, and tons of blocks for kids to build with.  Understandably, many of the adults were concerned about new traffic that the park would bring, considering it is estimated to bring 1.5 to 2.5 million a year.

It sounds like the park happening is not only dependent on the town wanting it, but also Merlin Entertainments receiving a tax-break deal that makes the $500 million investment worthwhile.  The development of the park alone will create nearly 1,000 new jobs, with another 1,000 or more coming online when it opens.  So between new tax revenues and jobs, the greater area is sure to benefit from the park.

© Bing
Goshen, New York is about an hour and fifteen minutes from Manhattan, with the greater metro area being the main draw for the park.  However, Boston is only about a 3.5 hour drive from the proposed site, and Philadelphia is and even shorter 2.5 hour trip.  Depending on how negotiations go, the New York park could theoretically open in 2019 or 2020.

Currently there are only two Legoland parks in the U.S., in Florida and California.  Both of those parks have been great successes and have seen much expansion in the past few years.  Worldwide there are 4 other Legoland parks operating, with three more currently under construction.