Noah's Ark theme park to push forward despite controversy

by Tom Anstey | 01 Aug 2014

Plans for a controversial US$120m (£71m, €86.5m) Old Testament theme park in Kentucky, US, based around a central Noah’s Arc structure, have won preliminary approval for state tax incentives of as much as US$18.25m (€13.6m, £10.7m) to keep the project afloat.

The Kentucky Tourism Development Finance Authority voted unanimously to give preliminary approval of the incentives for the US$73m (€54.4m, £43m) first construction phase of the biblical theme park.

An independent consultant for the state will take six to eight weeks to review the project. It then will come back to the state panel for final consideration of tax incentives.

The 800-acre attraction, known as the ‘Ark Encounter’, is set to feature a recreation of a village prior to the biblical floods, as well as a Tower of Babel housing an audio-visual effects theatre.

The site will also be home to a ride that will give visitors the chance to explore the 10 plagues of Egypt, with the new attraction planned for a site 40 miles from Petersburg, Kentucky.

The group behind the plans, Answers in Genesis (AiG), is also responsible for a Creationist Museum in Kentucky.

However, the controversial proposals could face opposition, with American Atheists stating the project to be “absolutely inappropriate and unconstitutional for the state to promote a religious view.” The body has also said that taking legal action to block the park was “not out of the question.”

Another group – Freedom From Religion – has urged people to take action against the plans by directly contacting the Kentucky Tourism Department.

The first phase will include a petting zoo, restaurants and a walking trail with the attraction’s ark – costing US$24.5m (£14.6m, €17.6m) alone to build. Follow on phases will see a retail centre called The Walled City, the Tower of Babel, a walk-through biblical history, and a 1st-century village.

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Plans for a controversial US$120m (£71m, €86.5m) Old Testament theme park in Kentucky, US, based around a central Noah’s Arc structure, have won preliminary approval for state tax incentives of as much as US$18.25m (€13.6m, £10.7m) to keep the project afloat. The Kentucky Tourism Development Finance Authority voted unanimously to give preliminary approval of the incentives for the US$73m (€54.4m, £43m) first construction phase of the biblical theme park. An
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The theme park plans have come up against stern opposition / Answers in Genesis
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