Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

St. Johns Area's Growth Gets Six Flags' Attention

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

St. Johns Area's Growth Gets Six Flags' Attention

Article excerpt

After four years of roller-coaster rumors, Six Flags Corp. has

stopped denying its interest in St. Johns County.

Instead, the New Jersey-based amusement park developer

apparently is entertaining a notion or two about this area.

"While Six Flags has a lot of interest in the area, perhaps

any discussions like that would be premature," said Bill Moore,

senior vice president for theme park development at Six Flags

headquarters.

"We're looking for opportunities that make sense for

ourgrowth in the future,"

Moore declined to discuss to what extent St. Johns County is

one of those opportunities.

"I'm not going to comment on any specific plans on what we

may have in the future. We're not `not interested' -- and we are

not going to comment if we are," he said. "The process is slow

and it takes time to look at any market."

Six Flags operates eight theme parks, including Six Flags

Over Georgia in Atlanta. The company's visitor count of 26

million a year is second only to Disney.

And the company is expanding. Six Flags plans to build its

first new park since 1971 on more than 200 acres in New England.

The $250 million theme park is expected to open in 2001.

Now, after four years of often-adamant denials of interest in

St. Johns County for a potential project, Six Flags admits it's

paying attention to the area's growth.

"We certainly know people there and have been contacted quite

frequently by business interests and tourist interests," Moore

said.

"You guys know there is a lot going on down there," Moore said.

Not the least of which is the massive World Golf Village,

which expects to attract 1 million visitors a year. The north

St. Johns County project is scheduled to open next spring along

Interstate 95, which carries 12 million travelers a year past

the site.

The speculation is where in the St. Johns County area Six

Flags might be interested. …

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