The plans for Grand Texas appear to be taking shape, with new renderings showing an elaborate and Texas history-themed amusement and water park on the more than 600 acres of piney woods in East Montgomery County.
The project’s leaders, who closed on the land this summer, have previously said the new park could fill the void that AstroWorld left behind.
The first phase of construction, which includes building infrastructure and clearing land, will start early next year. The original plans for this project included the Grand Texas theme park and Big Rivers Water Park.
At a press conference Wednesday, the project leaders announced that the newly named “Grand Texas Sports and Entertainment District” will include an amphitheater, a “Downtown Texas” area with space for hotels and retail, an RV park, baseball fields and sports complex. These ventures will be financed by developers independent of the theme park’s investment group.
Developers declined to disclose the price of the venture, but said they received no upfront money from the East Montgomery County Improvement District.
Big Rivers Water Park is slated to open in April 2015 and the Grand Texas Theme Park should be ready by December 2015.http://houston.culturemap.com/news/city_life/11-07-13-the-new-astroworld-sets-an-opening-date-houstons-next-theme-park-to-blast-off-in-2015/?utm_source=sf_twitter
Officials with the hotly-anticipated Grand Texas Theme Park unveiled fresh details of their upcoming 630-acre entertainment district, capturing the imaginations of those longing for a worthy successor to the long-shuttered Six Flags AstroWorld.
Located along Highway 59 just north of the New Caney exit, the amusement park is expected to open by summer 2015 with seven theme areas devoted to Lone Star history and culture. The Montgomery County Police Reporter blog notes that the project will feature several roller coasters, including one slated to be one of the 10 largest wooden roller coasters in the nation.
Grand Texas' Monty Galland assured the East Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce that the theme park is only a single component of a larger plan that involves 450,000 square feet for retail and dining, multiple hotels, an RV area and a 6,000-seat stadium designed for minor league baseball games.
Also on the drawing boards is an elaborate water park that will tap into the region's natural landscape, surely a nod to EarthQuest, the ecologically-minded amusement park planned for a plot of land a mile south of Grand Texas.
"Big Rivers Water Park is a 40-acre site where we will integrate the natural surroundings that is already there. Instead of big swaths of concrete, you will see water slides that wind around the towering oak trees and the lazy river will meander through the forest setting that is already there," Galland explained during the meeting. Along with two hotels, the water park will open several months before the theme park.
The Police Reporter says additional nature-themed amusements — a wakeboard lake, equestrian trails and zip lines — are planned throughout the entertainment district as well as an outdoor amphitheater for concerts and hockey games.
To see Grand Texas to fruition, theme park owners have assembled a team of industry heavy-hitters that includes former AstroWorld general manager Chuck Hendrix and one-time Six Flags Magic Mountain director Bob Logan. Bob Runyon, who designed Woodlands Market Street, serves as chief architect of the project while designer Bruce Robinson (formerly of Angry Birds Theme Park and Dollywood) will oversee all theme concepts.
By 2020, officials anticipate 4.5 million annual visitors to the theme park district, which will bring roughly 2,000 new jobs to the area. As many as 1,600 construction workers are expected to be used during the building process, which begins in January.
Grand Texas marketing director Ashley Higson was unavailable for comment on Thursday, but promised CultureMap that more details will be released in the next week. Stay tuned.
Umm, I think they are bringing back GREEZED LIGHTNIN? This is the park Houston needs. I count 5 coasters.