SAN DIEGO, CA —It was quite a technological feat, but SeaWorld has reached a major milestone in the construction of its newest roller coaster.
On Friday, the amusement park officials installed the ride's highest section of track 153 feet above ground.An American flag was placed on the highest section in a “topping out” ceremony.
The ride, named “Emperor” to reflect the ability of emperor penguins to dive to depths of 1,800 feet in the waters of their native Antarctica, is being built next to the “Journey to Atlantis” attraction on what was previously a parking lot. The roller coaster, expected to open next summer, is advertised as the tallest, fastest and longest coaster in the state.
The steel roller coaster developed by Bolliger & Mabillard Consulting Engineers, the Swiss roller coaster manufacturer, features a vertical drop about 90 degrees, which will provide a moment of free-falling for the passenger. Unlike a traditional train design, this train gives all passengers virtually the same experience throughout the course of the ride.
“There will be no other coaster experience like this in California,” said Marilyn Hannes, SeaWorld San Diego’s park president. “Emperor will both thrill our coaster enthusiasts and also serve as an attraction that educates guests about the importance of animal and conservation issues.”
This is not the first coaster Bolliger & Mabillard, has built for the park, but it is the tallest.