New water attraction at Canobie Lake Park wins conditional approvalBy MELISSA PROULX
Union Leader Correspondent
October 26. 2017 3:15PM
SALEM -- Tidal River, Canobie Lake Park’s first major new attraction in years, will feature a lazy river to float down, water slides and other features.
The planning board approved plans for the new attraction earlier this week, though some permits and other conditions remain to be met before construction can begin.
Tidal River will be located on the southwest area of the park near the existing Castaway water playground. Features include a lazy river ride patrons can float along on a tube, a handicap accessible wave pool, water slides, food and drink shops, a lounge area, and restrooms and changing rooms.
The constantly flowing river will surround an island with water slides and a wave pool near one of the bends. There will be a bridge for patrons to cross the river to get to the water slides.
In all, the new attraction will cover nearly 2 acres.
According to George Fredette, president of SFC Engineering Partnership, Inc. in Windham, who is representing Canobie Lake, the park likes to make a splash now and again.
“Canobie Lake Park, since its early years, had a swimming pool,” he said. “It was a very large Olympic-sized pool.”
It was a popular attraction, Fredette said, but in 2006 was closed to make room for the park’s main gate.
Tidal River will be a place for patrons to cool off and relax during the summer season, he said.
“We’re expecting that the Tidal River keeps them coming to Canobie,” Fredette said.
No significant increases to vehicle traffic are expected as a result of the project. While the park depends on Salem for other municipal services, a memo from Director of Municipal Services Roy Sorenson assured planners this wouldn’t be a problem.
The planning board was asked if that assessment includes an expected increase in demand for services due to the Tuscan Village development at the former Rockingham Park.
“I believe (Sorenson) did take that into account,” Town Planner Ross Moldoff replied.
The last ride to be added to Salem’s Main Street amusement park was the Untamed roller coaster in 2011. New additions to a park keep the experience fresh for patrons, according to Fredette.
“Canobie Lake Park continues to make upgrades to keep people interested in coming,” he said.