Jump to content
  TPR Home | Parks | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram 

When will we see newer theme parks being built in the USA?


Recommended Posts

Mostly I am curious as to why we are seeing newer theme parks being built overseas now as to why we really aren't seeing too many new theme parks built I our country? My only question is it probably because of our terrible economy or is it something else? Eventually when will we see like a Warner bros movieworld over in the US and a 20th Century Fox World, a lionsgate theme park, we already have universal and Disney here in the states so why not have other movie companies expand their film theme parks in our country if they are doing well in international countries?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 25
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Mostly I am curious as to why we are seeing newer theme parks being built overseas now as to why we really aren't seeing too many new theme parks built in our country? My only question is it probably because of our terrible economy or is it something else?

 

The park industry in the United States is effectively "mature"; that term in economics means that it is no longer in a growth stage. Almost every major market has at least one park if not multiple serving it. For those markets that don't, the cost of building a new theme park is so high up front between land acquisition, infrastructure, and ride building, and the amount of cash needed to maintain facilities over the long run so great in comparison to all the other ways one might invest their money that it simply does not make any sense for most people to try. Most theme parks built in the Americas failed with their original owner, and it only by the 2nd or 3rd owner and multiple bankruptcies that most of them became capable of returning a profit.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The US economy is booming right now. Yes, there was a recession, but it's been over since 2012-2013, depending on where you are. Theme park construction generally restarted about that time, same with investment in other industries.

 

This relatively healthy economy probably won't last much longer, though, so I wouldn't get my hopes too high.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So we will see international countries overseas continue to build newer theme parks while our country will probably take about 10-15 more years or too some of you think we will probably not get any newer type of theme parks based on film companies. I'm talking Warner Bros, Lionsgate, Sony, 20th Century Fox which just got the new deal done with Disney, New Line Cinema, etc. Movie styles theme parks I am talking about actually.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The park industry in the United States is effectively "mature"; that term in economics means that it is no longer in a growth stage. Almost every major market has at least one park if not multiple serving it. For those markets that don't, the cost of building a new theme park is so high up front between land acquisition, infrastructure, and ride building, and the amount of cash needed to maintain facilities over the long run so great in comparison to all the other ways one might invest their money that it simply does not make any sense for most people to try. Most theme parks built in the Americas failed with their original owner, and it only by the 2nd or 3rd owner and multiple bankruptcies that most of them became capable of returning a profit.

Because of the market's maturity, we're also seeing a lot more smaller, "self-contained" themed entertainment experiences such as themed museum exhibits, independent haunts, pop-up events, and escape rooms. Those kinds of developments are really popular in dense urban areas where all that needs to be leased / rented is a single floor of an office building or a small space in the middle of a plaza.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Because of the market's maturity, we're also seeing a lot more smaller, "self-contained" themed entertainment experiences such as themed museum exhibits, independent haunts, pop-up events, and escape rooms. Those kinds of developments are really popular in dense urban areas where all that needs to be leased / rented is a single floor of an office building or a small space in the middle of a plaza.

 

Also, with retail real estate prices dropping like a stone as the Searses and KMarts of the world die, there's a lot of big boxes needing to be filled by something. First there were traditional FECs, then the most recent updates to that model with the likes of Legoland Discovery Center. Parque Reunidos is like Merlin developing several variations. I won't be at all surprised if Six Flags re-enters that world too (they were there a looooong time ago).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So we will see international countries overseas continue to build newer theme parks while our country will probably take about 10-15 more years or too some of you think we will probably not get any newer type of theme parks based on film companies. I'm talking Warner Bros, Lionsgate, Sony, 20th Century Fox which just got the new deal done with Disney, New Line Cinema, etc. Movie styles theme parks I am talking about actually.

 

Oh, if you are talking about movie style parks, change my prediction to 50 years.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The US economy is booming right now. Yes, there was a recession, but it's been over since 2012-2013, depending on where you are. Theme park construction generally restarted about that time, same with investment in other industries.

 

This relatively healthy economy probably won't last much longer, though, so I wouldn't get my hopes too high.

True. I'm no economist, I just pay attention to what real economists say. So when the OP asked the question in a way that assumed the current US economy is terrible, I felt that it needed to be pointed out that pretty much every economist says the opposite. People who invest millions of dollars in their business are going to pay attention to the economy, so it's no coincidence that they started building new rides again right about the time the economy was beginning to recover.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mostly I am curious as to why we are seeing newer theme parks being built overseas now as to why we really aren't seeing too many new theme parks built in our country? My only question is it probably because of our terrible economy or is it something else?

 

The park industry in the United States is effectively "mature"; that term in economics means that it is no longer in a growth stage. Almost every major market has at least one park if not multiple serving it. For those markets that don't, the cost of building a new theme park is so high up front between land acquisition, infrastructure, and ride building, and the amount of cash needed to maintain facilities over the long run so great in comparison to all the other ways one might invest their money that it simply does not make any sense for most people to try. Most theme parks built in the Americas failed with their original owner, and it only by the 2nd or 3rd owner and multiple bankruptcies that most of them became capable of returning a profit.

 

This. There are no new theme parks going up in the US because there's no demand for it.

 

^Plus the new indoor theme park going to New Jersey in 2019, with the Gerstlauers.

 

LOL. Never going to happen.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So we will see international countries overseas continue to build newer theme parks while our country will probably take about 10-15 more years or too some of you think we will probably not get any newer type of theme parks based on film companies. I'm talking Warner Bros, Lionsgate, Sony, 20th Century Fox which just got the new deal done with Disney, New Line Cinema, etc. Movie styles theme parks I am talking about actually.

 

On this note, Warner is New Line, and currently gets their theme park kicks (and money) from Six Flags.

 

As you said, Fox is Disney, and thus parks already exist.

 

I'd argue that Lionsgate (aside from Hunger Games, which is kinda dead now anyway) and Sony don't have any properties really worth developing into themed areas or rides. Not enough to make a whole park out of anyway.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Also, the "destination" amusement / theme park market is extremely volatile in North America. If you're not a part of "the big five", that's Walt Disney P&R, Universal P&R, SeaWorld P&E, Six Flags, or Cedar Fair, you're basically a nobody if you're in that particular "destination" market. Of the top twenty most-attended parks in 2016, only one of them isn't part of those five companies - Hersheypark.

 

Because of that, I don't believe that we will ever see a new, I.P.-driven, all-season, destination theme park unless the entirety of southern California spontaneously combusts or the entirety of central Florida gets flooded due to climate change. I consider Nickelodeon Universe at the Meadowlands somewhat of an anomaly because it's entirely indoors - I think it can break in based on the apparent popularity of indoor water park resorts in the mid-Atlantic.

 

If I were to speculate - I do think that there still is room for small parks like Galveston Pleasure Pier, the Fun Spot parks, and The Park at OWA to succeed based on local appeal, but I'd bet their growth would be slower due to smaller attendance numbers and less revenue. Perhaps others should follow the Fun Spot model of "amusement park + F.E.C., rec center, or some other extra thing" to broaden their appeal.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's not that there isn't demand for any theme parks, it is that the cost of building a theme park exceeds the capability of the demanders to make it a financial success. You might be able to build a theme park in Houston and get 2.5 million people in the gate. It could totally happen. The problem is that you'd spend $650-700 million to do it, minimum. Once you pay your employees, pay the utilities, pay the insurance, pay the interest on the loans you took out to build the park, pay your taxes: you're barely breaking even. Now the real challenge: if you don't spend more money for the next year on both upkeep *and* new attractions, your attendance and revenue will drop. But you already aren't making much money, so what's gonna happen?

 

You couldn't build Great Adventure today even if you knew on the other end you'd get Great Adventure's attendance and per cap spending. That's the reality.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The history of many parks are interesting. Basically, some rich optimists lost money.

 

Re: the DC area thread, thinking about it more the land Six Flags America is on will probably continue to increase in value. That would be a reason to not build anything large and longterm. I would be less surprised by the area losing that park in maybe 20 years than it gaining one.

 

The Park at OWA and the new project in Jersey I think are ways to build a big shopping center on cheap land and then get people to come to it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There is that rumor that Universal is looking at building another park in Orlando.

 

Grand Texas is supposedly under construction.

 

But otherwise, I don't think we'll be seeing that much outside of FEC style parks or showcase parks like The Park at OWA.

If I remember correctly, the last major theme park to open before OWA was Hard Rock Park/Freestyle Music Park; and we all know how well that turned out.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There is that rumor that Universal is looking at building another park in Orlando.

 

Grand Texas is supposedly under construction.

 

But otherwise, I don't think we'll be seeing that much outside of FEC style parks or showcase parks like The Park at OWA.

If I remember correctly, the last major theme park to open before OWA was Hard Rock Park/Freestyle Music Park; and we all know how well that turned out.

 

Hard Rock was a horrible location with incredibly bad timing. The idea was great and should be explored again. A Led Zepplin themed coaster with it's own custom mix ride sound track was awesome even if it was an average B&M. If that park was attached to one of the Hard Rock Casino resorts like Tampa or Vegas or even as part of the Hard Rock Hotel at Universal it would be still be open.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier also sprang up in that time.

 

 

These type of parks are the most likely along with parks like FunSpot

 

I'd love to see a Fun Spot type model built along side a complex of FEC's with bowling and movie theaters to create

 

I still think a Pleasure Pier type of attraction on a unique piece of land like Mud Island here in Memphis with two major interstates (I-40 and I-55) crossing nearby would a prime location.

 

A 400 ft. Star Flyer with a skyline on one side and the Mighty Mississippi on the other with two lighted Bridges thrown in would be some experience. Though I think a more park like setting like Tivoli Gardens would be a better fit.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Terms of Use https://themeparkreview.com/forum/topic/116-terms-of-service-please-read/