Busch Gardens Tampa entrance image

Busch Gardens Tampa has begun preparing the site for its 2011 rollercoaster project, closing the Serengeti Express train to enable its track to be re-routed.

The track is being moved to make room for the new coaster, the layout of which was revealed last week in leaked construction documents. The changes to the Serengeti Express' route are primarily in the Edge of Africa area, which will seemingly be dominated by the new ride when it opens.

Behind the Thrills reports that the train closed to the public on Tuesday. The site features pictures of the ongoing work, which show that the bulk of the train's track in the Edge of Africa area is in the process of being torn up and moved. This marks the first phase of preparation for the new coaster, with the Serengeti Express expected to return to action on May 27.

The new coaster is expected to cover a sprawling area, and will require the closure of the Skyride cable cars for most of the second half of 2010. The climactic water section of the Rhino Rally attraction is also expected to be demolished, with the ride being extended out further into the "savannah" to compensate for the loss.

The plans revealed last week suggest that the new coaster will focus on high speed and acceleration, and could feature as many as 3 launched sections. For full details on Busch Gardens Tampa's planned coaster, see TPT's round-up of rumors following last week's leak.

No opening date has been revealed for Busch Gardens Tampa's latest rollercoaster but the park is likely to be targeting an opening ahead of the Memorial Day weekend at the end of May, 2011.

You can keep up to date with the latest confirmed and rumored opening dates for new attractions through Theme Park Tourist's "New Attraction Watch" section, and by signing up for our weekly newsletter.


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