State Fair of Texas to begin construction on new tower ride

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by BRAD WATSON

WFAA

Posted on February 13, 2012 at 8:35 PM

Updated Tuesday, Feb 14 at 7:59 AM

DALLAS - The Texas Star ferris wheel, the Midway and the Cotton Bowl are easily recognizable features of Fair Park. But in a month, construction starts on another landmark that'll tower over them all.

The Top of Texas Centennial Tower will give people the opportunity to look far and wide around Dallas. Sue Gooding with the State Fair of Texas said looking into downtown Dallas "will be a fantastic opportunity for our guests."

The state fair is erecting the $11-million tower with an outer ring that 100 passengers enter at ground level, which then rises and then spins at the top.

At 500 feet tall, the Top of Texas Tower compares with Reunion Tower, which stands at 560 feet.

The tower will open with the state fair Sept. 28.

City council members liked learning of the progress, but complained to Park Department officials that there still aren't enough daily attractions.

"And we we've got to do is be more aggressive in marketing campaign, in marketing Fair Park," said councilman Dwaine Caraway.

In May 2013, the fair hopes to attract more as it extends the Midway and opens Summer Adventures at Fair Park to run through August.

The tower will be an anchor attraction, though not full time yet.

"It will probably be open for any kind of major event that's going on here, but it's really for the State Fair of Texas and for the summer adventures in Fair Park, until we move into something that might be year-round," Gooding said.

The city expects the tower to light the way for more activity at Fair Park.

E-mail bwatson@wfaa.com

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