$350 Million Theme Park Coming to the Hudson Valley
After over a year of battles, it appears a $350 million theme park is officially coming to the Hudson Valley.
On Wednesday in Goshen, Merlin Entertainments Chief Executive Officer Nick Varney officially announced that Legoland New York is going to be built in Goshen.
After Varney made the announcement, over 30,000 Lego bricks were dumped onto the stage and 1,500 balloons fell from the ceiling.
“We are humbled to join the Goshen community,” Varney said. “I can pledge to you that Legoland New York will be a trusted and valued member of this community. I am thrilled that Goshen is the place where we will build our third Legoland in the U.S. - the first in the Northeast.”
After about 16 months of public meetings, hearings and a review process, Legoland New York was granted conditional approval for its site plan by the Town of Goshen Planning Board, allowing it to officially move ahead with building the park.
“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. “I am honored to announce Legoland New York is officially moving forward.”
The $350 million, 500 acre theme park will feature a 250-room hotel and is expected to attract nearly 2 million visitors per year, reports ABC.
The theme park and hotel is going to be built on 500 acres off Route 17 near exit 125 in Goshen.
The theme park has faced many critics. The biggest concern seems to be increased traffic on Route 17 in Goshen.
In March, Orange County Executive Steven Neuhaus told Hudson Valley Post that Route 17 needs an upgrade, regardless of Legoland.
“Legoland has to show the traffic patterns of people coming in and out,” Neuhaus said. “If they can address maybe two lanes getting off the exit and two lanes out, without impacting local roads, that would go a long way.”
The theme park and resort will feature Lego characters and educational programs for children. New York State will spend $18 million toward construction and for off-site infrastructure and road improvements, reports the New York Daily News.
“I am eager to continue with our $350 million investment with significant more investments to follow in the years to come, providing Goshen, Orange County, the Hudson Valley and New York State with significant economic benefits,” Varney said.
Legoland plans to break ground very soon, with hopes of opening in 2020. The park will then be open seasonally from April 1 to November 1.
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