Attractions industry news

10 Oct 2018

New details released for Europe’s tallest observation wheel

Developer the World Wheel Company has released striking new images of Newcastle’s Whey Aye, which is set to be Europe’s tallest observation wheel when built.

Standing at almost 460ft (140m) and named after a phrase in the local Geordie dialect, the huge observation wheel will pip its country rival the London Eye by five metres to the title of Europe’s largest and will sit at the east end of the city’s Quayside.

The new computer-generated renderings show how the wheel will look in its full glory, along with other elements of the wider Giants on the Quayside development – including a 39ft (12m) tall steel structure of a man.

The Giants on the Quayside development will also see the addition of a family entertainment centre boasting trampolines, climbing walls, a skywalk and separate café. Meanwhile, a new food and beverage destination for Newcastle called The Giant’s Quay will also be built.

On top of all of this, the development will be home to The Giant Sport Deck, which will include a multi-purpose sports complex with covered five-a-side pitches, tennis courts and a virtual golf club called The Quayside Golf Club.

"It gives us great pleasure to reveal these images and further details of the development to give people a deeper understanding of our vision for the Whey Aye and the Giants on the Quayside development" said Phil Lynagh, CEO of World Wheel Company’s Newcastle operation.

"We have had an overwhelmingly positive response to our plans so far and hope this latest announcement will whet people’s appetites even further.

"We are proposing a £100m (US$131.5m, €114.4m) regeneration and inward investment project that will create local jobs and ongoing revenue for the regional economy."

Subject to media approval, the development could also see a world record-breaking digital LED screen attached to the wheel, which would stretch 107,000sq ft (10,000sq m). This would accompany the already planned 7,500sq ft (700sq m) LED digital screen on the facade of the visitor centre, at the base of the Whey Aye.

A detailed planning application relating to the observation wheel and the Giants on the Quayside development is due to be submitted to Newcastle City Council by the developer later this year.

"Our development will complement Newcastle’s global reputation as a vibrant, progressive, welcoming city and help deliver one of Europe’s best waterfront experiences," said World Wheel Company CMO, Nigel Hartley,. "We look forward to presenting our full proposals to Newcastle City Council later this year."

The World Wheel Company is already responsible for giant wheels in Suzhou, China, and Tbilisi, Georgia, as well as more than 20 family entertainment centres globally.

The firm has appointed 12 advisers to help deliver the Newcastle project including five local businesses, namely: marketing agency SHA; commercial law firm Muckle; international design practice Ryder Architecture; structural and civil engineering designers Studio Horn; and retail property consultants @Retail.

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