Orlando to Get Giant 'Eye' Ferris Wheel

Posted Mar 3rd 2011 11:30 AMUpdated Mar 3rd 2011 07:33 PM

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orlando eye similiar to london eye

Pawel Libera, Visit London

A 425-foot Ferris wheel, called the "Orlando Eye" will be part of a new tourist attraction complex in Orlando, Fla.

Merlin Entertainments, the same company that owns the landmark London Eye wheel in the UK, says the new shopping and entertainment complex to be called "I-Walk Orlando" should open in 2013, reports the Associated Press.

"I-Walk Orlando is destined to be a 'must visit' destination for Orlando's millions of visitors," said Nick Varney, Merlin's chief executive officer, reports the Orlando Sentinel. "With this project we believe Merlin, Unicorp and Circle Entertainment [partners in the project] will be bringing an exceptional group of new attractions to what is undoubtedly the best and most exciting location for family entertainment anywhere in the world."

This isn't the first time Orlando has been promised a giant observation wheel. Another firm announced in 2008 it was building a 400-foot Ferris wheel next door to the Orange County Convention Center, but that project never got off the ground.

The Orlando Eye will almost be as tall as its London counterpart, which stands at 442 feet. A Madame Tussauds wax museum is also in the works for the tourist attraction in Orlando.

I-Walk Orlando will be located about 1.5 miles north of the Orange County Convention Center, in an area which has been vacant for years. A shopping-and-dining center was knocked down in 2007 to make way for a new 350,000-square-foot complex of retail and restaurants, but the development never came to fruition.

Merlin is also opening a Legoland theme park nearby in October 2011.

For other bird's eye view fans, this May, the 200-foot SkyWheel Myrtle Beach is slated to open at the Myrtle Beach Oceanfront Boardwalk and Promenade in South Carolina, as its anchor attraction, providing beach and sea views. When it opens it will hold the title of largest Ferris wheel in the U.S., according to local tourism officials.



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Michael Denney

Seriously, though, I saw on TV it was supposed to be bigger than the one in England...also, they should put a webcam on it--or several!

August 28 2011 at 11:00 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Alfred Schrader

If you attach big hands to it, you could use it as a clock.

March 03 2011 at 4:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Alfred Schrader's comment
Michael Denney

Maybe they'll designate three people each ride to put on arrow-shaped hats and cast the shadow of the time on some kind of ground clock...I'd watch that on TV for free.

August 28 2011 at 10:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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