ALBANY — New York City parents could soon have a new destination to take the kids for a day. State officials announced Wednesday that a $350 million Legoland theme park and resort is coming to the Hudson Valley town of Goshen in Orange County, about 60 miles from New York City.
Plans call for the park, which is being developed by Merlin Entertainments, to open in 2020. “Legoland New York will further anchor the Mid-Hudson region as a top-notch destination for visitors to New York State,” said Empire State Development President Howard Zemsky.
The 170-acre theme park and resort will feature Lego characters and educational programs for children aged two to 10, officials said. The state intends to put up $18 million toward construction of the park and for off-site infrastructure and road improvements.
Although the project was recently approved by the Goshen Planning Board it still faces opposition and legal challenges from local residents who fear the park will bring traffic congestion and other environmental woes to the community.
Opponents are trying to force a public referendum on the town’s decision to sell nine acres of land to Merlin Entertainments for use in the project. Lawyers for the town and Merlin are seeking to invalidate the petitions.
“We have spent a lot of time building relationships in the community, listening and responding to concerns, and we are looking forward to building a theme park that will enhance the community and be a tremendous neighbor,” Merlin Chief Executive Officer Nick Varney said.