Pharrell Williams gets big push for his wave pool project

Pharrell Williams has secured further funding for his wave pool project in Virginia Beach. The $330 million Atlantic Park development will be the biggest public-private partnership in the city’s history, according to news reports.

Bloomberg reported that a two-part transaction will be split between the Virginia Small Business Financing Authority and the Atlantic Park Community Development Authority will create $121 million of unrated revenue bonds.

Virginia Beach will pony up more than $140 million of its own dollars with the goal of transforming the city to become a year-round destination.

Currently, Virginia Beach is a cultural icon of Americana. The city embraces its shiny object status boasting T-Shirt shops, a touristy boardwalk, and an annual tacky lights tour. Several military bases surround the town and are responsible for the majority of employment. The famed Mt. Trashmore, one of the largest landfills in the USA, lies on the outskirts of town.

Atlantic Park project
The Atlantic Park project got a push with $121 million of unrated revenue bonds this week.

The $325 million Atlantic Park development will cover three city blocks and feature retail and restaurants, offices, apartments and almost 2,000 underground parking spaces and a 3,500-seat live performance venue. At the center of the project will be a Wavegarden Cove surf pool.

Wavegarden Coves are diamond-shaped wave pools that produce surf through a series of modular units. The more modules a Cove has, the longer the wave that can be produced. The Wavegarden Cove test facility in the Basque Country of Spain is 28 modules while the Wave Park facility in South Korea boasts 56 modules.

The project is getting a major push from hometown hero and 10-time Grammy award winner Pharrell Williams. It will stand where the city’s famed Dome once stood.

“In a way, this project started when I was a kid,” said Williams. “When I was riding to work with my grandmother, I was always intrigued by the futuristic facade of the Dome building. It made my young imagination run wild. Today I have the opportunity to bring the Dome back to life in a way that’s so inspiring. We call this vision of the future, The Wave.”