A 625-foot-tall Ferris wheel, the New York Wheel, is set to debut on Staten Island in 2015, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced today.
When construction ends, the New York Wheel should stand as the tallest Ferris wheel in the world, outpacing the current champ, the Singapore Flyer, by 84 feet. The iconic London Eye and upcoming Las Vegas "High Roller" Wheel also stand far below New York's mega wheel in height.
The Wheel will make its home next to the Richmond County Ballpark in the St. George coastal area of Staten Island. The area offers great views into the New York boroughs and New Jersey.
Engineers and designers are decorating the Staten Island spinner with 36 football-shaped capsules, each capable of holding 40 people for a maximum capacity of 1,440 per 38-minute ride. The convenient placement next to the St. George Ferry Terminal, and an open-every-day philosophy (10 a.m. to 10 p.m.) should make this a popular destination for visitors. Number crunchers predict 30,000 riders a day and an estimated 4.5 million visitors per year.
"The New York Wheel will be an attraction unlike any other in New York City -- even unlike any other on the planet," Bloomberg said. "It will offer unparalleled and breathtaking views, and is sure to become one of the premier attractions in New York City and the latest exciting addition to our newly revitalized waterfront."
Statisticians might appreciate that the Wheel figures out to nearly one-third the height of the upcoming One World Trade Center, and about half that of the Empire State building.
The giant tourist attraction also comes with the enormous addition of a 470,000-square-foot shopping zenith boasting 100 designer outlets, restaurants, exhibitions about New York history, and a vast green roof with gardens and solar panels. Details also peg a 120,000-square-foot hotel with 200-room capacity in the cards.