The Great ATR Waste of Space

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by AstroDan, 15th Apr 2021.

  1. GaryH

    GaryH TowersStreet Member

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    Jeez until I read the opening post by Dan I didn’t realise just how much had gone. I’m actually quite concerned about my visit in May as to where I can get some decent food during the day.

    Given takeaways can open I’m confused as to why so many have closed down!
     
  2. AstroDan

    AstroDan TS Forum Team Team Member

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    Part of the unfortunate logic from an ATR perspective is this.

    1. Close shop/outlet due to cuts/pressures
    2. Realise that the same money is coming in because guests just spend the £ elsewhere
    3. Find it pointless to reopen outlets, accepting the fact that it's poor for the guest experience

    I think this is sadly where we're at. Quite short sighted and not guest experience led.

    Sent from my SM-G991B using Tapatalk
     
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  3. MaxPower

    MaxPower TowersStreet Member

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    Sums up Merlin perfectly.
     
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  4. Squiggs

    Squiggs TS Site Team Team Member

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    It strikes me that all the empty units are a symptom of the removal of so many rides over the past ten years.

    Back in the 2000s, you had a better variety of rides and thus a better variety of queue times, so rather than spending 90 minutes in a queue for one ride, you were more likely to spend say an hour queueing for that ride and then jump in a shorter queue for a smaller ride. That meant that guests were moving around the park more often during the day and so had more opportunities for spending money on a great variety of things.

    These days it feels more like a queue by queue slog through your day at the park. If you've just spent 90 minutes in the queue for one ride and know the next ride you want to go on has a 70 minute queue, you are more likely to rush straight to the next queue. This means most visitors are no longer in the frame of mind needed to be browsing retail, sitting down to eat, playing sideshows or sampling something new.

    So basically as the ride selection has wound down over the years it has been constantly followed by all the other units around the park. This then leads to a downward spiral because the assumption by the bean counters is that the units aren't popular/can't be profitable rather then recognising that it overall short-term planning of the park at large that is causing the problem.
     
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  5. Themeparksandy1981

    Themeparksandy1981 TowersStreet Member

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    I think that’s the biggest problem with about
    80% of guests only visiting once or twice a year like us last year at scarefest we took lunch with us and ate it while queuing 2 hrs for Thirteen. We skip all shops at the end of rides and decided in advance we eat dinner at the Burger Kitchen in Mutiny Bay under cover before queuing 2 hrs for Wickerman before going home.
    They really need a shop like Blackpool where you can buy used ride parts or clothing.
     
  6. OilyWater

    OilyWater TowersStreet Member

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    Its well known but the park has a lot of unused space that used to be occupied by flats. Hopefully this the start of things changing with the temp new ones and David Walliams area expanding?

    Submission site *
    Ug Swinger site *
    Soakasaurus unit
    Toadstool site *
    Ripsaw site *
    Alton Mouse / Beast sites (but planning difficult)
    WoDW all former street shops/attractions
    Theatre
    Charlie elevators
    Sub Terra

    * temporarily filled

    Got hope for these being sorted in future. But it's been a sad time of recession and misguided investments in last 10 years (in my opinion). Interesting that just before and after the pandemic actually things starting to ignite for the park again.
     
  7. AstroDan

    AstroDan TS Forum Team Team Member

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    The confirmed closure of Nitrogenie this season takes the total number of mothballed/removed retail/F&B outlets to 19 in the park plus the abandoned queueline shops.

    Thorpe and Chessington have repurposed theirs... Alton just content to shut things down.

    19. Just say it out loud. Nineteen outlets.
     
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  8. Thameslink Rail

    Thameslink Rail TowersStreet Member

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    The app currently shows only eight restaurants and eight shops (although it's definitions of restaurant are a bit fuzzy as they call Cbeebies lunch box 'snacks'). The park has quite a lot of kiosks doing donuts and drinks (although given how long the queues for them can be they could probably do with more).
    Places that could do with more food? I don't know if Cbeebies Land needs another restaurant? I think a proper restaurant is needed on Towers Street, I would go for a Wetherspoons style set up with traditional pub food and beer (edit: I guess like it used to be when it was a bar and grill).
    Perhaps also add one in the Swiss Cottage like there used to with more 'quality' food and cakes like a National Trust tea-room.
    As for shopping I think there should be shops in Dark Forest and Forbidden Valley. I don't however see the point in having multiple shops in one area, e.g. having Buy The Smiler and X-Sell.
    Another edit: I think they should also move Eastern Express to a larger outlet, (not sure where though).
     
    Last edited: 21st Apr 2021
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  9. Skyscraper

    Skyscraper TowersStreet Member

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    Do we know if the Charlie elevators are still in the building, or whether they've been removed?
     
    Last edited: 22nd Apr 2021
  10. AstroDan

    AstroDan TS Forum Team Team Member

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    They remain in the building.
     
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  11. AT86

    AT86 TowersStreet Member

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    Interesting.

    I’m no expert but is there not a story in the Walliams book ‘The Midnight Gang’ that involves a flying hospital bed? (Think of the Charlie elevators and squint a bit, it’s not a million miles away aesthetically.) Also I think there is a part where someone even crashes out of a glass ceiling in that same book.
     
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  12. Matt.GC

    Matt.GC TowersStreet Member

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    I'm sure with a bit of maintenance, the Charlie elevators would be perfectly usable. They probably cost tonnes to install a mere 15 years ago.

    That's the thing with all this wasted space around. There's perfectly serviceable ride systems in Charlie. There's a fully functioning kitchen and toilets inside TS Bar and Grill. There's a 4d cinema and ready built buildings in CCL. There's a newly kitted out shop behind wooden panels in Xsell. A 5 year old kiosk, till point and shop fittings in the Galactica shop. Hell, there's even theming and an indoor drop tower present in NST.

    All of these could be reopened and marketed with low levels of refurbishment investment (they could even market them as 'New for 20 - -' for all I care). Many of these attractions and units were either extensive investments when they were initially opened or were only opened/refurbished in the last decade! Not just such a short term waste of cash, but such missed opportunities. Incredibly incompetent business practices when you think of it that way. All of the above seem like low hanging fruit to me.

    Sent from my VOG-L29 using Tapatalk
     
  13. jon81uk

    jon81uk TowersStreet Member

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    There was earlier discussion about use of the Tower St buildings. Randomly found out that street view exists on the back of them! https://goo.gl/maps/V4TD2YQRA8BUGcCd8
    Nicely themed entrance to those offices.
     
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