A major component of the ACE Coaster Christmas event this year was a backstage tour of the construction of Fireman’s Landing. The park opened up the center area to us, and had some of the construction leads on hand to answer our questions. Even for coaster-oriented folks, this area really seemed to impress everyone in attendance. It’s a great package of family-friendly rides, theming, and intriguing interactive experiences that will bring the magic of SDC to a new generation.
It’s been difficult for those following along through photos to gauge how everything is actually fitting together in reality vs. the concept art. I’m happy to report that the area is perfectly designed to extend the feeling of the city around the lakefront while also packing in the needed family rides. The area is a little disorienting for those who are used to Geyser Gulch because the deck is missing and the new structure is set farther back from the lake. There’s still a lot of pathway area to complete, and of course there’s still a lot of buildings and rides to construct, so the area will continue to transform into the new year. It’s still intriguing to figure out how it will all turn out, but I am much more confident now that we’ll all be highly impressed with it.
The rides are well placed to keep the city atmosphere as in tact as possible. The fire wagon ride is pretty close to the main building, which will help it fit in. The shot tower is of course essentially part of the new Firestation #3, so it fits in perfectly. The small rides are mostly tucked around the backside of the area out of the way. The balloons are the only things that will really stick out ride-wise, being situated a good bit in front of the main structure so they’ll be the first thing you see when you walk up. Fortunately, they look pretty good and are in-theme with the period, so it will all be a huge improvement over the gaudy old Geyser Gulch area.
The building is massive in person. It feels taller than Geyser Gulch, and clearly will have a lot more fun packed inside. Maintenance staff confirmed that the old Greedy Bros. structure will be removed from the lake. The lake will appear to grow quite a bit next year with all of that stuff plus the old deck area removed.
Now onto the photos: