Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Mesa Waterpark @ Riverview

Although Surprise was expecting to be the site for a revolutionary water park, in the end, Mesa has convinced the builder that their offer was a better fit. Currently, there are 3 water parks in the metropolitan Phoenix area (not including those which require a hotel-stay)... Waterworld Safari in North Phoenix, Big Surf in Tempe, and Golfland Sunsplash in Mesa. I don't know all of the details regarding the two cities' offers, however, I can look at a map and determine for myself that a water park somewhere in the far West Valley (Surprise, Waddell, Glendale, Litchfield Park, Goodyear, Buckeye) would have given many current West Valley residents a much closer alternative than the 3 listed above, not to mention the not-too-distant-future residents who will be looking for relief from the sun.

Honestly, if it was just me, lounging by my own pool would satisfy me on hot, summer days. But, I have children. 4 of them! And, occasionally they prefer something out of the ordinary. I remember being a kid and going to Big Surf for a special day with my family, or heading to Waterworld with my teenage friends. It would have been nice to have a water park a little more local than 45 minutes away. With the Cabela's store now open in Glendale, I would have figured that the water park would profit from those shoppers/visitors as well. The new water park sounds intriguing with its projected offering of snorkeling, white water rafting, and surfing, in addition to other sporting activities.

The $250 million dollar resort/water park is being built by Waveyard Development LLC, out of Scottsdale. When the entire project & surrounding development comes to fruition, it will likely be over $500 million.

A November referendum could have an impact on this park as the developers have asked for residents' input to make sure they are "on board with the deal," prior to any construction. Additionally, a deal with the city (likely to include incentives) must be satisfied to determine how to best convert a municipal golf course and softball fields into a private, world-class amusement park. At this point, I don't know what private means... whether a membership, reservations at the resort, or simply an admission ticket will be required.

We'll have to follow up with the referendum and the city deal to know whether or not this waterpark will, in fact, be constructed in Mesa, but that's how it looks at this time.

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