Video: £28 million plan for Weston Pier revealed
The new rides and attractions set to thrill visitors when Weston-super-Mare's fire-ravaged Grand Pier reopens have been revealed.
A giant surfboard ride and a dragster ride simulating speeds of 300mph will form part of the £28-million project to rebuild the pier's pavilion.
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The Grand Pier's co-owner Kerry Michael says the attractions could be open by the summer of 2010, two years after a huge blaze destroyed the pavilion.
Mr Michael says he picked up inspiration for new rides while travelling the globe in search of the latest attractions.
On the surfboard ride, visitors will stand up and move along on two moving waves while those on the dragster ride will experience g-force while watching footage from a drag strip race.
Inside the pavilion will be 'Robocoaster', a giant arm ride which twists and spins people sitting inside a huge hand. Kerry said he would also reinstate old favourites such as the crazy house, dodgems and ghost train.
He said: "A lot of work has gone into coming up with the latest rides for the new pavilion. There is going to be a huge go-kart track even bigger than we had before.
"The giant surfboard ride on the roof of the walkway holds 20 people who stand up and it travels along a wave and spins, like you are surfing on a giant surfboard.
"We will also have a dragster ride on the roof as well, which holds nine people. All the over-18s amusements will be on the first floor.
"The north west corner tower will be a three-storey helter skelter and other corner towers will offer a children's play area, conferencing, office space and catering.
"There is also going to be an 85m observation tower, which slowly rotates. We also have a fantastic lighting scheme throughout, which is way over the top but it is run on LED so will be energy-efficient. I can't wait to get on and build it now.
"Our plans are being submitted to North Somerset Council today and it will go to committee on March 12, 2009."
Aside from the main rides, there will be an arrivals shelter at the shore end and a land train along the walkway. At the entrance, there will be a glass atrium roof which opens and closes.
At the rear of Weston pier there will be an Edwardian tearoom, which will double as a wedding venue for 125 people.
Mr Michael said extra safety measures will be included as part of the design to protect the complex in the event of another fire in the future.
He said: "There will be smoke venting in the roof and sprinklers and we are installing a water tank, which holds 165 cubic metres of water, in the base of the observation tower."
Peter Wood, one of the architects behind the new design, said: "We are very pleased with the way it has come out.
"We have spent a lot of time working on it and thinking about how it will sit in Weston.
"It is going to be an iconic building that will stand the test of time and sits well in the family of pier pavilions.
"It is a modern building but has important elements that link to the history of the pier, such as the four corner towers."
Subject to planning permission being awarded, the complex will open in the summer of 2010.
Project manager Eric Wallace from APS project management in Bristol, said: "We are going to be open in the summer of 2010 and that is a major challenge.
"We are on programme and we are trying to shorten that programme all the time."