Exclusive: Step inside the StarFlyer construction site

By Allison Walker Torres, Entertainment Reporter/Anchor
Last Updated: Friday, August 11, 2017, 6:45 PM EDT

Several years after its 2015 announcement, dirt's moving and concrete's flowing at the home of the world's tallest swing ride.

  • StarFlyer on I-Drive will be world's tallest swing ride
  • StarFlyer will be 50 feet taller than the Orlando Eye
  • Property will also house StarFlyer Cafe, Westgate time share

StarFlyer is a 450-foot-tall swing ride, under construction now on International Drive. Unicorp National Developments President Chuck Whittall let us inside the construction walls of the record-breaking thrill ride.

"You'll be swung 45 mph, 50 feet taller than the wheel," he said, referring to the Orlando Eye, just steps to the south on I-Drive.

Once completed, the StarFlyer will stand taller than the current tallest swing ride of its kind in the world, the 409-foot-tall New England SkyScreamer, which opened May 2015 at Six Flags New England.

At the base of the StarFlyer right now is a huge circular space that crews will fill with concrete. That's expected to happen in about four weeks, around Labor Day. From midnight until 8 a.m., crews will carry out a "continuous pour" from three pumps.

All of that concrete, combined with steel support rods, is nearly 5 million pounds. That's about the weight of six Boeing 747s.

Whittall also pointed out the metal embeds that will lock down the StarFlyer.

"There's six big embeds that weigh 4,000 pounds each," he said.

At the base of the attraction will be a complex Whittall describes as "modern."

"Yeah, I was inspired by Apple," he told us. "I wanted to do something cool like they're building. It's going to be a cool metal with a lime-green trim."

The developer says four tenants will occupy the base building. That includes a StarFlyer Cafe and Westgate time share.

We also found out that the StarFlyer might soon have some company.

"We're going to do a couple more rides at the wheel project, a couple more exciting rides," Whittall said.

StarFlyer should be open to the public by the end of this year.