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World's tallest roller coaster coming to Florida

6:38 AM, Nov 22, 2013   |    comments
Photo courtesy of NBC News
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ORLANDO, Fla. - The world's tallest roller coaster is slated to be built somewhere in Florida.

U.S. Thrill Rides has confirmed the 525-foot tall coaster has been purchased by a company in Florida that will soon announce that construction is underway.

The coaster will also be the longest in the U.S. with 8,000 feet of track.

"This is fast, smooth and very, very exciting," U.S. Thrill Rides President Michael Kitchen said.

Kitchen discussed the new coaster at the ongoing convention of the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions at the Orange County Convention Center. He said the ride vehicle would be part of the next-generation coaster.

The ride, currently known as the Polercoaster, can be anywhere from 300 to 650 feet tall.

"We use these on the Polercoaster in either a four-person or eight-person configuration," Kitchen said.

More than 90 people can ride at one time in a chain of vehicles, doing inversions and sudden accelerations in a tower-like structure 50 stories high.

The roller coaster also doubles as a high-rise restaurant.

"It will be 525 feet tall, and it's going to have two levels on top with nearly 20,000 square feet of restaurant, retail bar and banquet space available with 360-degree views of Florida," Kitchen said. "Unfortunately, until our customer releases that information, we're going to keep the location a tightly held secret for another couple of weeks."

Kitchen said the buyer has yet to decide the theme, specific design for the store and restaurant space or even the color scheme.

The roller coaster will be almost 100 feet taller than the SunTrust Tower in downtown Orlando and almost 200 feet taller than the Federal Aviation Administration tower at Orlando International Airport.

The FAA, which would have to approve a roller coaster that tall, also said it has no such paperwork for the state of Florida.

WESH-TV

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