Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Hersheypark Gets Green Light for Massive 23.5 Acre Expansion Plans

Hersheypark has been long rumored to want to expand their theme park onto land that was formerly a golf course, and is located adjacent to the current park.  In order for the plan to become a reality, the first big task was getting Park Blvd. moved, as it ran directly between the current park and the former golf course.

In the past couple of years the large project was completed to move Park Blvd. outward, allowing undisturbed access to the golf course.  The former Park Blvd. is now Chocolate World Way, and is currently serving the park with most public traffic enjoying the expanded and relocated Park Blvd.

© Bing Maps
Here is a look at what we're talking about.  You may need to click the image to get the needed detail.

The red lines follow the path of the old Park Blvd., while green lines follow the new Park Blvd., still seen under construction in these aerials.  The yellow outline then follows the part of the former golf course that could now be a massive, 23.5 acre expansion of the theme park.  The orange box shows the current entrance area, which we now know for sure will be heavily changed and rebuilt for the park's 2020 season, with work starting next year.

That news came from a recent planning meeting where Hersheypark got the approval to move forward with their plan.  This news story covers that meeting, and gives some details on the plan.  It mentions that the park's entrance will be reconfigured, with many buildings removed and new ones built.  The park's drop off area, I'm assuming for the trams, will also be changed - that is just above the orange area above.  Finally, it says that a part of Chocolate World Way will be removed, I would assume bordering the current entrance and down along Skyrush, and the rest of the road will become service access for the park.

© Google Maps
It is not often that we see a U.S. theme park embark on an expansion of this size that they can fully master plan and build over many, many years.  This is some seriously exciting news for any Hersheypark fan, especially when you compare the size of the expansion to the existing park.  The expansion is green in the above image, and very roughly in purple is a huge part of the park, with several themed lands in it, extending all the way up to around Storm Runner's station.

The article mentions that the park will release more details when they're further into the planning process, so stay tuned!