Dome Technology is under contract to build a dome for amusement park Funtown Splashtown USA in Saco, Maine.
The reinforced-concrete dome will be an upgrade to the Astrosphere, an existing fabric dome housing a Scrambler ride with a laser and light show.
To this point the Astrosphere has been inflated constantly by fan, and the airform is approaching its 15-year lifespan. Park owners have employed air domes for this ride since the mid-1970s, requiring that the airform and ride be taken down for the off season, then reassembled come spring. Ready for something permanent with little maintenance, company leadership contracted with Dome Technology to build the dome.
“Once a concrete dome is up, it’s up. I don’t have to worry about hurricanes and wind storms and losing power,” said Funtown Splashtown USA senior vice president Billy Cormier. “What I’m looking forward to is a building that’s going to be hard as a rock. It’s going to save me work, it’s going to be turnkey—in the spring I’ll turn on the light, do a little dusting, and we’ll be ready to go.”
Conditioning the Astrosphere has also been difficult historically, with weather dictating temperatures inside, including highs in the summer that exceed those outside—”not good for equipment and not good for workers,” Cormier said. The concrete shell will moderate temperatures and provide a backdrop for new laser shows and other special effects.
Dome Technology’s crew will mobilize in November, and construction time is set for four weeks. When complete, the dome will stand 75 feet in diameter and 30 feet tall with a utility garage and emergency exit.
Funtown Splashtown USA is Maine’s largest amusement and water park. The park has 50 rides, water slides and pools covering the 72-acre property with some of the biggest attractions in northern New England. For more information visit www.funtownsplashtownusa.com.
Photo gallery shows inside of the current Astrosphere. Image courtesy Funtown Splashtown USA.