The Orange County Commission unanimously voted to approve the $460 million proposed Skyplex development on International Drive.
Skyplex developer Joshua Wallack’s proposal includes a plan for the world’s tallest roller coaster at 501 feet, a 450-foot Skyfall drop tower, a surf park, the world’s largest Perkins Restaurant and a 350-room hotel.
“What we intend to build is a renaissance,” Wallack says. “Skyplex has the critical mass to bring people in and create thousands of jobs.”
The Skyscraper on the site was originally proposed to be 700 feet, but at Tuesday’s commission meeting, Skyplex attorney Hal Kantor says the tower would not surpass 600 feet.
Numerous business owners and residents who spoke in favor of the project say north I-Drive is “tired” and a “depressed” area that should be as vibrant as south I-Drive. Several times, Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs pointed out that north I-Drive is under the city of Orlando’s jurisdiction.Although three county residents spoke against the project, Sam Butler brought with him 250 petitions in support of Skyplex from his neighborhood, Tangelo Park, which would be the closest residential area to the project.“We’re going to have a complex over there that I’m told is going to have an excess of 3,700 jobs, and those jobs are going to be within walking distance of my community,” he says. “I don’t see anything but a win-win situation…There’s enough honey to go around for everybody.”