Cool Concept for Vertical Theme Parks

Theme Park News

Vertical Theme Park - With Skyscrapers - TallI’ve been championing more urban roller coasters and amusement parks, but this concept takes the idea quite a bit further. One of the most interesting segments of The Travel Channel’s show Future Scream Machines was Ju-Hyun Kim ‘s concept of the vertical theme park.

Currently, more than half of the World’s population lives in urban areas and that number’s projected to reach 70% by 2050. When you consider where people live and the interest in reducing our carbon footprint (walking instead of driving), Ju-Hyun Kim argues that vertical theme parks should be the way of the future. If you lived in Manhattan or London, you wouldn’t have to drive an hour or more outside of the city to where theme parks are usually located. You could just walk or take mass transit.

By building the park up, instead of out, an amusement park that would normally take up many acres could fit into a much smaller footprint. His concept features a park that’s 200 feet wide and 1,000 feet tall. And also, by stacking the structure vertically, you create opportunities to exploit the altitude. Roller coasters and log flumes could wind their way down the tower and there would places for controlled skydiving like we’ve seen on the Stratosphere.
Vertical Theme Park - Rides
Today, it’s only a concept, but the show did mention that there are international cities that have shown serious interest. So, who knows? What may seem out there and unthinkable today, may be a reality before you know it.

Learn more about Ju-Hyun Kim’s vertical theme park concept.

What’s Your Take?
Do you think this is a neat concept? Can you think of any advantages or disadvantages of such an idea? Leave a comment below. Images courtesy of Ju-Hyun Kim

Founder of My favorite coasters are B&M hypers and gigas. I'm also a huge fan of terrain roller coasters.


  1. To an extent, it’s been done before; I’m probably one of the few people on this site old enough to both remember and have been lucky enough to visit “The World of Sid and Marty Krofft” when it first opened in Atlanta, Ga. in the late ’70’s. (The gents responsible for H.R. Pufnstuf.)

    The layout of the park was memorable in that you had to take a gigantic and very narrow escalator to the top floor, where the entrance was. There were roughly five floors (I think), which each floor containing one major ride: a carousel made out of crystal, a giant pinball ride, a dark ride featuring the H.R. Pufnstuf characters, and one more ride and level that I don’t remember. The top level itself had street performers, a few midway games, puppet shows, and various performers that interacted with the visitors, and a few wandering mascots.

    Unfortunately, those rides were huge, and they sucked a lot of power; electrical breakdowns were common, and because the area of town the park was in was fairly crime-ridden at the time, the park barely stayed open for one year before the Kroffts finally had to shut it down for good. A shame, since the concept was pretty novel for the time.

    • Thanks Vanderian. That sounds very cool. I’ll look for images or video to share with everyone.

    • @Vanderian-wow that sounds like it was really cool. I would have loved to seen a crystal carousel, (is an avid carousel fan) and the giant pinball ride. what was that like?

      • Rosie, sorry this reply is so late – the Crystal Carousel was all about visual appeal, as opposed to a more atypical carousel experience. I don’t recall any of the figures on the ride being able to move up or down because of the sheer weight of them (they were carved hunks of crystal, after all). And there was no canopy overhead; most of the room was covered in blue carpet, and the figures themselves mostly looked like sea creatures, so it had an underwater theme…and the circular “tracks” the figures were mounted on revolved at differing speeds.

        The Pinball ride wasn’t as exciting as it sounded; they sat you in a hollowed-out steel ball that (very) slowly followed a track around a dark ride that would have you “bump” into moving flippers, bumpers, and buzzers. Lots of neon, and lots of funky space-age-sounding synthesized sound effects playing over the sound system. If you Google it, I believe there’s at least one personal website out there with a recording of the soundtrack for the ride.

  2. I would hate an amusement park like that

  3. i think it’s a cool idea i just don’t like because long twisting fast paced rides can’t be built in a building

  4. Its not really a good idea. Think of why they gor rid of high roller on stratosphere. It was shaking the tower. It will possiably collapse and the rides will be very rough and you would have to climb 1000 feet to the top.

  5. This would make for very interesting new ride concepts but would make it difficult to incorporate big roller coasters. I can’t see this idea having much success in America, but I think it will be a reality abroad in the next few decades

  6. It’s either going to be a terrible amusement park or The Towering Inferno II. I don’t think this concept could be a huge success.

  7. No way. It’s un-traditional. Think about it: you get to the parking lot, and you usually see towering rides and roller coasters, not a big, crammed tower. And, not to mention, it would be tough to build rides, let alone roller coasters, from that altitude. It would be difficult to get helicopters to that height, and cranes aren’t nearly that tall.

  8. Like some of the others who have commented, I too would miss the big, long roller coasters. However, and this is really thinking outside the box…what if they leased rooftop space from some of the neighboring buildings and had a traditional roller coaster that stretched across the top of multiple buildings? Can you imagine something like the Intimidator at 1,000′ up in the sky? I know the engineering isn’t feasible today with building sway and other factors, but maybe someday!


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