? Musical Prelude ?
Don’t call it a comeback, KDFans been here for years
Rocking our peers and putting parks in fear
Making plans rain down like a monsoon
Listen to the minds go boom
Over the competition, we’re towering
Wrecking shop, when I drop
These posts that make parks call the cops
It’s been a while, I know. In my defense, Busch Gardens Williamsburg has kept me very busy with BGWFans. When given the choice between writing about filings for a new coaster in Williamsburg or reporting on a monster truck rally in Doswell, I’m sorry, but I’m always picking the Busch Gardens Williamsburg story. That doesn’t mean we haven’t been visiting and following Kings Dominion though—we just haven’t run into anything worthy of writing about—well, that is, until now.
Anyone who follows BGWFans closely will know that when we obtain a real bombshell of a leak, its tradition to lead the post with a cringy spin on a hit song. Today, KDFans gets its first article ever that justifies partaking in that grand tradition—hence the LL Cool J prelude. What could KDFans be packing to justify such (embarrassing) cockiness? Leaked coaster plans. Leaked coaster plans for a proposed B&M Wing Coaster. A B&M Wing Coaster on the site previously occupied by Volcano. Yeah, today is big. Let’s get into it.
KDFans has exclusively been given copies of what we believe to be a legitimate, work-in-progress draft of a layout proposal for a wing coaster from Bolliger & Mabillard. We have reason to believe that the plans that we have seen are likely not a finalized iteration of the plans for the project. Additionally, we know that these plans are a few months old. That said, the existence of these documents and the details contained within them, do give us an incredible and unprecedented look inside the park’s direction with the Volcano replacement project.
As with any article like this, we need to point out that we cannot verify the authenticity of these documents with 100% certainty. We can, however, say that we are 99% sure that what we’re looking at is real and, furthermore, that we are sure enough in our judgement to bet KDFans’ reputation on it. Faking these documents and the circumstantial evidence around them is technically possible, but it would require an incredible amount of time, expertise, and almost certainly insider access. Having exhausted all avenues for debunking the documents that we can think of and having been satisfied with the information provided regarding the sourcing of these documents, we believe it’s fair to say that the plans we obtained are almost certainly real.
Just because they are real documents, doesn’t mean that the plans we obtained are in any way final, however. In fact, there’s evidence in the files we received that strongly suggests that these plans are still a working draft—likely a layout proposal that the designer sent to Cedar Fair/Kings Dominion for review and markup. It’s unclear how deep into negotiations the two parties were when these documents were created, and I believe that there’s ample evidence to suggest that there was still more work to do.
Now, much like the BGW Project 2021 station floor plan leak we recently ran on BGWFans, in an effort to keep the identity of our source confidential, we are opting not to share the actual copies of the plans we received. Instead, we’ve recreated them ourselves in such a way that conveys all of the interesting information but excludes anything that could be used to aid in narrowing down who is responsible for having provided them.
I know I keep repeating this, but since I know many people don’t actually read our articles and instead just scan them for photos…
WE DO NOT BELIEVE THESE PLANS ARE FINAL. THEY SHOULD BE VIEWED AS A POSSIBLE PROPOSAL FOR VOLCANO’S REPLACEMENT, NOT ASSUMED TO BE THE FINALIZED PLANS FOR THE PROJECT.
With that out of the way, what does this draft show? A small, roughly 100 foot tall, Bolliger & Mabillard wing coaster featuring a lift and five inversions taking up residence in Safari Village on the former Volcano site. A full image of the layout is included below followed by a key detailing each section.
Now, a few things may really stand out to anyone who knows their Bolliger & Mabillard wing coasters. First off, height-wise, this coaster is short. In fact, at the time of this writing, this coaster, as it is proposed in this plan, would probably be one of the shortest B&M wing coasters ever built. Despite its relatively limited height though, the leaked proposed layout does pack a healthy five inversions, which is what I would call “roughly average” for the model. The existence of a single storage track essentially confirms that this coaster, as designed in this draft, would only run two trains—again, not really uncommon for the model, but it’s worth noting nonetheless.
Something that may not be immediately obvious to many people is that the layout depicted above seems to actually be a modified version of an existing B&M wing coaster. The proposal in this draft appears to be a shortened version of the already-once-cloned B&M wing coaster layout Roller Coaster DataBase has dubbed the “Hot Go.” The iteration found in the plans we obtained removes the vertical loop after the dive drop and swaps in a simple banked turn in place of the Hot Go’s final helix. Regardless, with so many similarities, a video of the “Hot Go” layout in action should still give a very good idea of what this proposed wing coaster would actually look like if built as drafted in these plans. I’ve included a POV of Wings of Glory (or as it’s called on RCDB, Heaven’s Wing) at HB World below for reference—just imagine the vertical loop and final helix aren’t there.
Now that we have the proposed coaster layout, lets place it inside Kings Dominion. Once again, the map below is based solely on information contained within the draft proposal KDFans obtained. We’ll dive into more detail after the break.
As depicted in the map above, the wing coaster’s transfer track, station, and lift all run parallel to Flight of Fear’s launch tunnel with the wing-over drop towering directly next to the pathway that leads back to Flight of Fear and Intimidator 305. The visual of wing coaster trains diving down through that inversion from this angle would, surely, be fantastic. Currently a large fake rock structure featuring a waterfall is located in this general area. It’s unclear whether or not that structure would remain in this proposal, but it strikes me as fairly unlikely that it would.
The zero-g roll, jr. immelmann, and the heartline roll all take place in areas previously occupied by Kings Dominion’s now-demolished mountain, bringing us to the downward spiral (#8 in our layout graphic). According to the draft we obtained, if this layout were selected as the final design, Scrambler, would almost certainly need to be removed or relocated. This is strongly suggested by the documents we obtained, but not explicitly stated.
From that downward spiral, we enter the corkscrew, a banked turn, and then the final brake run—all of which are located in areas previously occupied by Volcano.
Perhaps the more interesting thing about this layout is what space it doesn’t fill. The area behind Avalanche that was previously used for Volcano’s huge, sweeping turn between its first and second launches (shaded dark green in the map above) seems to be largely untouched by this plan. Additionally, a very large area next to Avalanche is earmarked in the plans as a “plaza” with no real specifics given. That area is roughly approximated by the red shaded area in the map above.
A rough idea of a possible queue location is included in the draft we have and hence, I included it in the map above. That said, even if we assume for a moment that the coaster depicted roughly approximates the finished product, the surrounding elements like the station, queue, plaza, etc. were all clearly unfinished at the time when this iteration of the plans were drawn up. Additionally, these plans don’t make any obvious use of the Volcano gift shop and queue building which was left behind after Volcano was demolished. We’d expect that subsequent versions of the Volcano replacement project plans would incorporate that structure in one way or another.
Lastly, we have to address a major datapoint that we’ve successfully avoided until now: the timeline. According to our source, the plans above were labeled as a 2021 project. Now, as we’ve covered already, we know these plans are a few months old at this point. Thus, we are fairly confident in saying that, as of a few months ago, Kings Dominion was working to have Volcano’s replacement ready for 2021. Whether that date has since been pushed back to 2022 or whether or not this project is still even moving forward at all, we do not know. Hopefully public filings within the next eight months or so will reveal more.
Building off of the assessment that these are real, working copies of Volcano replacement project plans, we can safely say that, as of a few months ago, Kings Dominion was working with Bolliger & Mabillard on a relatively small wing coaster slated to open in 2021 on the site previously occupied by Volcano: The Blast Coaster. The plans, themselves, provide a very interesting glimpse into the development process for this coaster, but it’s hard to know just how solidified any of the details presented actually are. Regardless, even if all we know is that Kings Dominion is in talks with Bolliger & Mabillard for Volcano’s replacement, that’s still a pretty major story considering we’re still a year and a half or more away from a possible opening.
Are you thrilled with the potential for a new Bolliger & Mabillard project at Kings Dominion? Are you disappointed in the scale of this proposal? Let us know in the Volcano Replacement Project thread on ParkFans.net! To stay up to date on all things Kings Dominion, give KDFans a follow on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram! Thanks for reading! We’ll try to make sure you hear from us again before too long… ?