Busch Gardens is seeking permission from the Board of Supervisors to construct a new 315-foot high attraction, according to a county staff memo.
The Board of Supervisors will consider the request at its meeting at 5 p.m. on Aug. 8 at the County Government Center Board Room, 101 Mounts Bay Road.
At 315 feet, the new attraction would make it the tallest at Busch Gardens. Mach Tower, a drop tower attraction, is currently the tallest ride at Busch Gardens at 240 feet, with Griffon the tallest roller coaster at 205 feet.
As one of the conditions of the height waiver, Busch Gardens must begin building the attraction within 36 months from the date it is approved, or the waiver is voided.
According to a letter from county planner Roberta Sulouff to Vanasse Hangen Brustlin, a civil engineering firm which worked on
, the county’s planning staff has put forth preliminary conditions on the structure:
- No lights to be installed above 60 feet.
- No lights that direct the light upward except lighting fixtures that illuminate vertical solid wall surfaces related to the attraction.
- The color of the attraction at 60 feet or above should be muted and designed to minimize visual impacts.
- Supplemental evergreen landscaping shall be planted and should be shown on future development plans to be approved by both the director of planning and the Virginia Department of Transportation, and put in prior to receiving a certificate of occupancy for the attraction.
The planning documents submitted with the height waiver request show that the park has conducted a sight line balloon test to show potential visual impacts of the new attraction. Vanasse Hangen Brustlin submitted 13 different photographs showing how the new attraction would be visible outside of the amusement park.
“From most points of view, the new structure will not be more visible than Mach Tower, Griffon or Apollo’s Chariot,” the firm stated in a document responding to potential impacts of the new structure.