^ If the Golden Kingdom was able to hold the crowds of when Kingda Ka opened, then this should be a walk in the park. Also, I'm sure the park has some sort of plan for the blocked off path. Hopefully such a plan comes to fruition sooner rather than later.
But that was a new Golden Kingdom, with the pathway, the exhibits, Balin's Jungle, etc. That area, when it opened, was able to hold the crowds because Kingda Ka was isolated from the rest of the area, with two pathways to reach the ride, via Boardwalk and via Plaza Del Carnival. We are now looking at one pathway, via Boardwalk, and two record breaking rides attached to each. Currently, Kingda Ka's line can get overwhelming at times and that area can get a bit clustered. Closing Kingda Ka in the beginning of the season will only cause people to want to ride Kingda Ka more. Add a record breaking drop tower, people are going to want to ride both. On a busy day, we could possibly be looking at a full queue of Kingda Ka and, because we have no clue how the queue is going to be fully situated, an expected 2 hour wait for the Drop Tower, that area will be crammed. I just hope something is done to make sure that area can accommodate the influx of people wanting to ride Kingda Ka and the Drop Tower, which may be why we could see Rolling Thunder be removed in a total facelift of Golden Kingdom.
For the closing Kingda Ka at the beginning of the season argument - how many people go to Six Flags more than one time a season? I'm probably going to go with about 15-20% of the park's total attendance. Besides us, other enthusiasts and people that live somewhat close by, you won't have to worry about people wanting to ride Kingda Ka "more." It being closed will have virtually no affect on Kingda Ka's ridership later in the season. I'd be an idiot to say that the drop tower wouldn't bring any ridership to Ka (and more foot traffic in the area), but Kingda Ka already has a pretty significant queue and he Drop Tower's queue will be almost double the size. The foot traffic in the area may increase but the ride's queue's will eat most of the crowds up. Also, that side path is extraneous - It's small and narrow and really served no purpose when it was active besides that it provided an entrance to Balin's Jungle and gave a nice view of the Tiger habitats. That path served no purpose anymore when Balin's Jungle closed. That's why the park closed it.. You're under the impression that the "world's tallest drop tower" is going to create the attendance bump that "the world's tallest roller coaster" brought - which will not happen. So the side path would be a nice extra to have, but really isn't necessary without Balin's Jungle, for it serves virtually no purpose to the main strip of the Golden Kingdom which stretches from the Boardwalk to the entrance of Kingda Ka.
My argument is not which will bring more crowds, obviously the hype of Kingda Ka opening back in 05 will remain the higher up. I'm looking at the General Public standpoint, which is not the most favorable, but sadly somewhat realistic view. To this day, Kingda Ka is a draw worldwide. Closing Kingda Ka will make people think something new will happen to the ride. GP though Medusa was knocked down and Bizarro was added in its place. A similar effect (maybe not to that extent but god only knows what people are thinking). It is the first ride of the day for about half of the coaster riders (I might be a bit generous but still, Kingda Ka gets most attention early as opposed to the other side of the park). And it is obvious that a new ride, the tallest drop tower attached to the tallest coaster nonetheless, will cause a huge pull from people all over to go an ride, especially early to try to avoid the long lines. I'm not arguing the fact of the path's closure (even though I think its a brutal hassle to walk all the way around and into Boardwalk to get to Kingda Ka.
You see, what you said there proved my point. I think you're twisting your perspective of Great Adventure with an enthusiasts point of view on Great Adventure. When you said "closing Kingda Ka will make people think something new will happen to the ride," this is a perfect example of an enthusiasts perspective. WE will think think Kingda Ka is getting something new, the GP will think the ride is broken (the only time these paths cross is when the ride is actually broken (i.e. El Toro Currently)). Also, you're also clouding your opinions with plausible speculation. Let me say this once, and once only: THE EXTRANEOUS GOLDEN KINGDOM PATH WILL NOT OPEN IF THERE IS NOTHING THERE TO ENTICE GUESTS. The reason i'm arguing with you on this one is because you're saying it is a necessity to the Golden Kingdom, when really your perspective is clouding from what you want, to what's logical. When you say " I think its a brutal hassle to walk all the way around into Boardwalk to get to Kingda Ka," you're adding your opinion to soemthing without providing something logical to make your opinion reality. If you were to say that ' Although the Golden Kingdom path is currently closed, I hope the park has plan for Balin's Jungle so that they can reopen the path, henceforth providing a quick route from Plaza del Carnival to the Golden Kingdom." So if you make your words sound something like speculation, then we both wouldn't be writing these long posts, now would we?
My point is, there is probably more than just the tower. I mean adding a new ride in a dead-ish area means there should be total revival of the area to make it more attractive. I'm stating something needs to be done or else it'll be one big cluster(expletive) in that little area, between the rush of people going for Kingda Ka and the Drop tower, and all of the people leaving the area, which also brings up the question of how the exit, not the queue, for the Drop Tower will be made (I can't picture an easy path right now that will suffice as an exit). We need that area back to life (not as much as Old Country but that's besides the point). I cannot see the park opening the Drop Tower without fixing the area, which means hopefully reopening that path to help control the higher flow that will occur with the reopening and opening of Kingda Ka and Drop Tower. It may not be a huge influx, but that area needs to be able to control the larger crowds. Plus, Boardwalk will probably get a tad bit crowded near the entrance, if another outlet is created.
If your point is that there is probably more than just a tower, than I can only ask that you please make this clear when you post. It's important that everyone understands what you're trying to say, and I don't think you were very clear with your last few posts.
The park may have a plan to revive the area for when the drop tower opens (which I may remind everyone that it is still speculation and has NOT been confirmed (yet..)(despite those teal supports laying there ..). While we can speculate that there will be an expansion of the Golden Kingdom (re-expansion, rather), we will not know until Six Flags announces the new rides line-up on Thursday @ 6:00 a.m. Don't get me wrong, I would be thrilled if the Golden Kingdom re-expanded, but we must not expect it to happen. For years and years, everyone's speculated that The Old Country would reopen, but it came as a disappointment when it didn't reopen because everyone built themselves up so much that they eventually believed it would happen. The park is keeping The Old Country closed for the same reason they're keeping the Golden Kngdom closed, because there just isn't anything to draw people that way (yet..).
Again, that path did barely, if any crowd control for the Golden Kingdom. You're under the impression that it made such a big difference when it really didn't. That path would be a NIGHTMARE for crowd control. The Boardwalk entrance is large enough to control those crowds on its own. The park saw this when they closed Balin's Jungle and they decided that the path wasn't necessary to the Golden Kingdom. If it were necessary for crowd control, that path would still be here, wouldn't it be?
As for the 15-20% attendance, you may be right with your statistics but you helping my point. That means, we will say 80% one time visitors, at the world's largest theme park, with new visitors coming in constantly. I would think maybe the park is understanding that the attendance rate may be rising (at least those traveling to the park on vacation) as this possible hotel proposal is still up for discussion on the board. More people wanting to come to the park will blatantly see Kingda Ka and the drop tower from a good mile radius. There is a higher draw from out-of-towners and adding a record breaking ride will only make that appeal more visible.
Let me throw another possible statistic at you. About 97% of the people who come to Great Adventure are within a 200 mile radius. That leaves 3% of the park's total attendance to stay at the possible hotel (which is still a LONG way out from development). You're assuming that the Hotel will be done and completed by sometime this season. It's just not going to happen. By the time the hotel is complete, the drop tower will lose the majority of its original draw. And you're also assuming that no other park in the world will build higher than Kingda Ka at some point. There is no doubt in my mind that somewhere, at sometime, there WILL BE a new World's tallest roller coaster. At that point Kingda Ka will be the #2. Think about it, 2 years after Cedar Point added Top Thrill Dragster, it's ridership plummeted (i'll bring up the chart in a later post, couldn't find it right now) because it wasn't "the cool thing" anymore. While Top Thrill Dragster still has a draw to Cedar Point, it's much less than that of the World's Tallest Roller Coaster. Also, just as a side note, Great Adventure's attendance hasn't been at its peak in years. Six Flags focused a lot of their attention on Magic Mountain, causing their attendance to rise above Great Adventure's. So the attendance may rise when the hotel comes, but when will that be, 3-5 years down the line? While there are no plans (that i've heard) to build a new World's tallest roller coaster, you can't assume that it's not going to happen. Once that does, a lot of Kingda Ka's draw will die. If Kingda Ka's draw dies, so will the drop tower's (according to your logic).
We could keep arguing back and forth with our own perspective, but let us both stop with the ridiculously long posts. I think everyone on the site is getting tired of reading this nonsense. Let's end it here. No more. Done.