The giant Ferris wheel “the London Eye” has been a major attraction since opening in 2000. The site has drawn 3.75 million visitors each year, and is the largest Ferris wheel in Europe.

In recent years, plans to construct a colossal wheel on the waterfront of Staten Island, New York have been progressing smoothly.

According to an official report, the New York Wheel should be finished by December 2017, and be open to the public in the spring of 2018. By the time construction is complete, the wheel will surpass its predecessors and become the largest Ferris wheel in the world.

Set in the southwestern side of New York, Staten Island serves as an important port for transporting both passengers and cargo. During the 1990s the island was used as a waste disposal site, until ultimately being shut down. As one of the five boroughs of New York City, Staten Island was targeted by the New York State Government to transform it into a tourism attraction.

The New York Wheel and the planned “Empire Outlet,” which will include shopping, restaurants and theatres, are key elements to enticing tourists to the “forgotten borough.” 3.5 million people are expected to visit the island after construction on the wheel and outlet are finished.

According to Rich A Marin, the president and CEO of the New York Wheel LLC, the New York Wheel will consist of 36 cylindrical viewing cabins, each holding 40 passengers. The wheel will take 38 minutes to complete a single rotation, as passengers enjoy the sights of downtown Manhattan, and spectacular views of the peak of the Statue of Liberty. The wheel is scheduled to open daily from 10am to midnight, with a ticket price of $35.

The nearby outlet also provides sightseers with a premium shopping and dining experience. The foundation of the Ferris wheel was already laid in June of 2016, and the site of the outlet has been readied for construction. The attraction’s three-story parking garage is also nearing completion, and will be able to hold up to 950 vehicles. More info and photos

By Sining Zheng Source: