Yes! Pharrell Williams and Virginia Beach Cove project advance
With Urbnsurf in Melbourne and The Wave Bristol open in England, The Wave Virginia Beach finally has a full-size Cove to assess and a business model to copy.
Prior to October’s opening of the two, Virginia Beach had to speculate as to what the waves would look like and how a commercial surf park model would actual work. And this week the dream took one step closer to becoming reality.
The Virginia Beach city council members unanimously voted 10-0 to support the $325million The Wave Virginia project. For the past few years the city has gone back and forth trying to negotiate a deal that will please both residents and the Venture Realty Group to create a wave pool where the iconic Dome of Virginia Beach once stood.
“We’ve had so many missed opportunities for this particular site,” Councilwoman Rosemary Wilson told The Virginia Pilot. “All these kind of things that came and went. And I’m glad they came and went. This is a unique project. It’s exciting. People are going to be attracted to this.”
Pharrell Williams spoke at a council meeting earlier this month in support of Atlantic Park, the official name of the project. Virginia Beach is Pharrell’s hometown and he says that a Wavegarden is going to push the region into the future.
Which settings will The Wave Virgina Beach choose? Here is a look at the only three operational Cove wave pools in the world, Urbnsurf, The Wave Bristol and Wavegarden R&D.
“Virginia Beach is a place for those looking forward. We call this vision of the future “The Wave,” and it embodies the energy, the spirit, the imagination and potential of Virginia Beach and its people,” said Pharrell Williams in a promotional video clip.
The 10-acre site between 18th and 20th streets is one of the last remaining empty spaces on a heavily developed stretch of coast. Since the city’s original convention center and concert hall, The Dome, was torn down in 1994 – the land is now occupied by two parking lots.
“In a way this project started when I was a kid riding to work with my grandmother,” said Williams in the video post. “Our ride would take us past the old Dome site. I was always intrigued by the futuristic facade of the building. It made my young imagination run wild.”
In addition to the Cove, the Atlantic Park will feature retail and restaurants, offices, apartments and almost 2,000 parking spaces in garages along with movie theatre and a 3,500-seat live performance venue.