Kennywood expansion would double size of amusement park
Kennywood Park plans to almost double the size of the historic amusement park using nearby parcels it is buying, but most of the plans are contingent on the completion of a planned $2.5 billion toll road nearby.
The study suggests Kennywood and two other properties owned by the company, Sandcastle Water Park in nearby West Homestead, and Idlewild Park in Ligonier, can become regional entertainment destinations if the Mon-Fayette Expressway is completed, said park spokeswoman Mary Lou Rosemeyer.
The toll road is slated to run through much of the Monongahela River Valley where the park is now next to a much smaller state highway, Route 837.
If all goes well, construction on the park's expansion could start by 2010.
The company's plans would nearly double the size of the 40-acre park, which began business in 1898 as a trolley park and evolved into the Pittsburgh-area's leading amusement park.
Among other things, the park plans to acquire 23 acres of nearby brownfields and it has slowly purchased some nearby residential parcels over the past decade. Last month, the park bought a shopping center next to its parking lots across the highway.
Officials didn't immediately say what kinds or how many new attractions might be built as part of the expansion.