A new plan has submitted to the Louisville Metro Government for the revival of the closed Kentucky Kingdom theme park, requesting a $17.5 million bond to fund its reopening.
Former owner Ed Hart saw a request for a $20 million bond rejected by the city earlier this month, appearing to end chances of the park reopening in 2012. However, he has now offered to inject more of his own funds into the project and to offer the city a larger, guaranteed share of revenue from Kentucky Kingdom.
The city has yet to approve or reject Hart's offer, with the mayor and chief financial officer set to study it this week. Chris Poynter, a spokesperson for Louisville mayor Greg Fischer, told WFPL News that the main issue is whether or not the state contributes financially to the plan. He said: "When the state decided not to help put money in, it was disappointing because we thought we could have a three-legged stool financially, with the state contributing some, the city contributing some and, obviously, the private developer contributing some."
The new plan would see Kentucky Kingdom opened on a limited basis in 2012, with several key elements of Hart's ambitious original plans dropped. Proposals to add a major new rollercoaster, to expand the water park and to reopen the T2 and Twisted Twins rollercoasters would be dropped. However, several smaller attractions would be added and the water park would still have receive a limited upgrade, alongside refurbishments to existing rides.
Former operator Six Flags announced the closure of Kentucky Kingdom in January 2010, following a failure to agree changes to the park's lease. The Fair Board claims that Six Flags proposed that it pay no rent for the nine remaining years on the lease - instead offering the state a cut of any potential future profits.