Saudi Arabia has unveiled plans for the world’s longest, tallest and fastest rollercoaster ride as part of an ambitious recreational project that will include at least 12 record breaking attractions. Designs for the country’s mega theme park, called Al Qiddiya, which is set to open to the public in 2023, were unveiled in a ceremony earlier this week.
An American recreational company known as Six Flags Entertainment Corporation, has been awarded the contract for building the mega theme park. Announcing the record breaking attractions the theme park operator said that Al Qiddiya will be “the most unique Six Flags theme park ever built.”
Located 40 kilometres from the capital Riyadh, Al Qiddiya is expected to be the pre-eminent entertainment, sports and cultural destination. It will contain as many as 300 recreational and educational facilities. Once complete it will represent the pinnacle of the kingdom’s recreational ambitions and fulfil a component of Crown Prince Mohamed Bin Salman’s ambitious plan to diversify the country’s economy and reduce its dependency on oil through the modernisation plan known as Vision 2030.
The mega theme park, which will be built on a 79-acre site, is expected to be completed in four years’ time and will contain six parts called City of Thrills, Discovery Springs, Steam Town, Twilight Gardens, Valley of Fortune and Grand Exposition.
Its major attraction will be the rollercoaster ride. With speeds of up to 250 kilometres per hour, the Falcon’s Flight, as it is known, will be the centre piece of the theme park. A promotional video released by the Al Qiddiya Project shows a four-carriage, 16-seat rollercoaster speeding thorough the desert canyons, racing up huge inclines and steaming through tunnels at breathtaking speeds.
Michael Reininger, Chief Executive Officer of Qiddiya Investment Company, was reported saying: “Our vision is to make Six Flags Qiddiya a theme park that delivers all the thrills and excitement that audiences from all over the world have come to expect from the Six Flags brand, and to elevate those experiences with authentic themes connected to the location.”
David McKillips, president of Six Flags International Development Company, added: ‘We are thrilled to be part of a project of such scale and scope and are proud to celebrate this milestone with Qiddiya.”