Legoland announces its New York theme park will open in 2020
Merlin Entertainments today announced that it will proceed with previously discussed plans to build a third Legoland park in the United States, this time in New York state.
The plans for the Legoland New York park in Goshen had been delayed by the local approval process, but conditional approval is now in hand, and Merlin Entertainments CEO Nick Varney announced in a press conference and ceremony today that the project will proceed to construction.
"We have spent a lot of time building relationships in the community, listening and responding to concerns, and we are looking forward to building a theme park that will enhance the community and be a tremendous neighbor," Varney said.
The $350 million Legoland New York is slated to open in 2020. It joins Legoland parks in Carlsbad, California and Winter Haven, Florida, as well as parks in Europe, Dubai, Malaysia, and Japan. Goshen is located north of New York City, between Interstates 84 and 87, about 30 miles west of West Point.
For trivia buffs, Goshen is located in New York's Orange County, making it yet another U.S. theme park located in an Orange County.
Interesting how they'll work it with the colder weather.
Well, they already built an indoor Miniland in Dubai, so I suppose they could do the same in New York, just for the opposite meteorological reason.
Our winters are cold and snowy here in NY so my understanding is that the park will close for the winter months. Most likely this will be similar to Sesame Place, where the park is open through Halloween, then closes until April. Note that there will be a hotel which I think will be open year round. As a resident of Orange County with two LEGO loving kids, I’m very excited!
Coincidentally I was at Legoland Windsor today. It opens seasonally and it closes for the winter (briefly open over Christmas) until March. I’d be interested to know how overall customer service and value for money compares with Windsor to other parks around the world. Legoland Windsor is a nice park, but there are numerous flaws and their operations department are understaffed and inefficiently run. I wish Merlin would concentrate improve the quality and maintenance of their Legoland Park brand before opening more and more gates.
Legoland Windsor is hardly in a warm Climate... Merlin have a lot of experience with that sort of thing... (their Flagship park Alton Towers operates seasonally)
Chad, I'm sure they're counting on NYC residents and some tourists since that is a huge number of people, but it won't be too easy for the tourists to get to Goshen as a "me too" experience. It's quite a drive from the city. The Metro-North isn't a great option as it's also a long ride and the nearest stop is still a ten minute drive. It is about 25 minutes from the growing Stewart Airport so maybe they will be able to pull some visitors coming into NY that way. One interesting tourist group will actually be Asians. For some reason, A TON of them visit Woodbury Commons outlet mall in Orange County.
For reference on the weather, Dorney Park closes after Halloween (actually the wknd before Halloween this year) and SF Great Adventure used to close after Halloween but has been operating through Christmas for the past two years. I'm not sure I see Legoland's outdoor operations going past Halloween, but definitely not into the heart of winter. There will be some indoor attractions but I don't believe they've laid out specifics yet.
All three Legoland parks in Europe use a seasonal operating schedule (as do many regional parks around the world), so I would not be at all surprised to see the same thing in use here. My guess is that the park will probably be open from spring break to around Halloween, then possibly open with limited hours and attractions around Christmas. Attendance is already low at Legoland California and Florida during the school year, so with unfavorable weather it likely wouldn't be worth opening during the winter.
Anyone interested in building a theme park?
No need for speculation, from the release... "Once completed, LEGOLAND New York will be open seasonally from April to November. The LEGOLAND Hotel, which will be open all year round."
What's the logic in placing it in Goshen? It seems to be too far away from the population centers and major highways. I would have selected somewhere along 95 closer to Jackson, NJ.
Goshen is pretty accessible as the park is right off 17 by 84, both fairly major highways. I wouldn't say we're too much further from the population centers than Jackson. Could they have done better? Possibly, but NY/NJ is a very difficult area to acquire land and get government support for a project like this and Orange County and the IDA were very willing to play ball.
@MikeW The European Legoland work fine in cold weather. They close some outdoor rides but have enough indoors to keep running. We went to Legoland Billund on a day that peaked at like 4 degrees Celsius. It was on the cusp of snowfall, but it was brilliant! So I expect it'll be fine up until it closes for winter!
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