06 October 2010
Abandoned Six Flags in New Orleans
Check out these pics!
From the Flickr page (which, for clarification, isn't mine):
This is probably the riskiest location we've been. Before we decided to take our chances and journey out to this iconic location, we took notice of all the stories we had heard of others trying their luck at getting in. There were rumors of a guard tentatively watching the perimeter and grounds. Other stories said that people were caught by workers or police. And it seemed to be a consistent critique. So we took a gamble and decided to go. Only, to our surprise, it was relatively easy to get in, completely vacant of any guards or watchmen, and we were pleasantly greeted by two other groups of young guys who were just exploring the park for fun. We stayed for a couple of hours and had a blast. It was an unusual feeling being in an entire rotting amusement park (almost) completely alone. Here's its history.
Six Flags New Orleans is an amusement park in New Orleans, Louisiana, which has been closed since Hurricane Katrina struck in 2005. The park is located in Eastern New Orleans, in the Ninth Ward of the city off Interstate 510. The park first opened under the name "Jazzland," opening in 2000 and operated by Alfa Smartparks before Six Flags took over the park lease in 2002.
Eastern New Orleans was badly flooded in 2005 in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. The park grounds are located on a low-lying section of Eastern New Orleans, with a 6-foot earthen flood berm running along the perimeter, creating an artificial basin. After the park's drainage pumps failed during the storm, the berm retained the combination of rainwater and sea water overflow from Lake Pontchartrain caused by Katrina's massive storm surge, submerging the entire park grounds in corrosive, brackish floodwater to a depth of 4–7 feet. The floodwater was not drained for over a month. Due to the damage received, the park has been and is currently closed.
Damage reports by Six Flags inspectors stated that the park buildings are 80% demolished, all of the flat rides have been effectively destroyed by long term salt-water immersion, and both the wooden track and steel superstructure of the Mega Zeph have been damaged beyond likely hope of repair. The only large ride to escape relatively unscathed was the Batman: The Ride roller-coaster, due to its elevated station platform and corrosion-resistant support structure.
On December 15, 2006, Six Flags confirmed that they were removing Batman: The Ride for refurbishment and relocating it to a new park, as it was considered to be the only salvageable ride. The ride was reassembled in 2008 at Six Flags Fiesta Texas in San Antonio and opened under the new name Goliath. In addition to Batman: The Ride, Six Flags removed shade coverings, ride parts, lights, security cameras, planting structures, and various other salvageable items. Six Flags also removed their large lighted sign from the top of the park entrance, effectively indicating their intent not to return.
The land, owned by the city of New Orleans, is currently leased to and operated by Six Flags. After Hurricane Katrina, Six Flags has sought to end its lease on the site. The owners claim the park must remain shut down as long as outstanding claims with insurance companies remain unsettled. As of early 2008, the site is overgrown with debris and weeds. Removal of the debris and underbrush has now begun. On August 18, 2009, it was announced that the land would be re-developed into a Nickelodeon-branded water/theme park. On September 18, 2009, the city of New Orleans fined Six Flags $3 million and ordered the park to vacate its lease.