Crews are also currently working on the powerhouse, or the “brains” of the roller coaster, the station area where visitors will board Impulse, and the photo booth and souvenir stand for the ride. After bolts have been tightened and wiring is complete, test runs will begin with the coaster’s test car, which has arrived on site. A better idea of the ride’s public opening date will be determined closer to opening day of the park’s 89th season, which is Saturday, April 25.
Impulse is Knoebels’ first major steel coaster since Whirlwind was removed in 2005. The tower roller coaster will be one of the first things visitors see as they approach the park via Knoebels Parkway. The all-new steel roller coaster features: a 98 foot high chain lift hill, a 90-degree free fall drop, several inversions, speeds over 55 miles per hour, three eight-passenger roller coaster cars with lap restraints, and more.
The Knoebels team began preparing the site for the new thrill ride the second the park closed for the day this past Labor Day. Initial efforts included removing Boat Tag and Bumper Boats, rerouting storm drains and various underground utilities, and fencing the area. After site preparation, came drilling and foundation work. The 159 caissons on site are an average of 17’6” into the earth. The area is further stabilized by roughly 3,100 cubic yards of concrete.
Impulse is employing approximately 45 people. The roller coaster was manufactured by German company Zierer, meaning that the steel was designed, constructed, assembled to ensure proper fit, disassembled, primed, and painted in Europe. The steel track and supports arrived in a total of 51 shipping containers.
Impulse is a major initiative of the fourth generation of the Knoebel family. Being that Knoebels is an amusement park for all ages to enjoy, management hopes that this ride will appeal to a new generation of riders.