The Long Beach City Council is tonight expected to get a look at a proposal to bring a Cyclone Racer roller coaster back to the city where the original Cyclone Racer reigned at the beachside Pike from 1930 to 1968. According to a release from Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske, who is pushing her colleagues to seriously consider backing the project, taxpayers would be off the financial hook for what's envisioned to be a privately built and paid for attraction.
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Project designer Larry Osterhoudt has already identified land near the Queen Mary or the Aquarium of the Pacific where what he's calling "The World's Greatest Ride" can be built. As we pointed out in our original story, Coney Island in New York is toying with the idea of building its own roller coaster, which is doubly ironic given Long Beach's original Cyclone was erected as a tourism-minded reaction to Brooklyn's.
"I'd like to see private investors work their magic and create a tourism opportunity just as Flugtag and the Grand Prix have done," says Schipske, who is running for mayor next year, in her release. "Creation of attractions and unique concepts like bringing back an iconic landmark like the Cyclone Racer or creating a park on an abandoned overpass help to draw tourists to our city, creating more jobs and tourism dollars."
Schipske, who has written extensively about Long Beach history, adds that the project would "bring back an important part of Long Beach's early history."