By Outer Banks Voice on October 25, 2016
The park is designed for up to 5,000 patrons a day and is scheduled to open next summer.
H2OBX Waterpark will feature more than 30 waterslides, pools and attractions on 80 acres along U.S. 158 near Harbinger, 3 miles north of the Wright Memorial Bridge.
“We are very excited to be working with the entire Outer Banks community to deliver a world-class waterpark that will deliver an exciting new entertainment option for vacationers,” said Arthur Berry, III, part of the five-member development team.
The company says H2OBX will create more than 200 full-time and seasonal jobs once fully open, and the community will see direct and indirect economic impacts through suppliers, real estate services, retail, food service, health care and more.
“H2OBX will further benefit the area through pre- and post-opening job creation and draw additional tourism to the area,” Berry said.
Among the local firms the company has already chosen, Barnhill Construction is the lead contractor, Hatchell Concrete of Manteo has been working on site prep and Bizport of Kill Devil Hills is in charge of marketing.
Company officials added they will be using other local and regional vendors for construction and day-to-day supplies.
The company said the waterpark has been carefully designed and themed to pay homage to the history and culture of the Outer Banks, and the attractions will offer varying degrees of thrills, lengths, drops, turns and intensity.
While having some of the traditional rides and pools that are standard across the waterpark industry, that’s where the developers say classic waterpark recreation ends and innovation begins.
Enhanced attractions will include the Twin Tides wave pool, which will deliver the fundamental ocean-simulated current, tide and waves but with new dual “beachfront” entrances on opposite ends.
A revolutionary Adventure Lagoon includes climb, crawl and balance soft mat obstacles and swim zones.
Also unique to H2OBX is an immersive, multi-level, pirate-themed play structure that reveals a design offering more waterslides and interactive water effects.
The park will also feature a surfing simulator, 30,000 square-foot action wave pool, hybrid waterslides, special effects, including aqua-lucent lighting, gravity defying enhancements, increased thrill factors and themeing.
Shaded seating areas, multiple food and beverage outlets offering variety from snacks to gourmet, a Wright Brothers flyer themed bar and free Wi-Fi are among the many conveniences planned.
Up to 50 private cabanas, including a premium cabana village, will offer first-class amenities and luxury guest service.
H2OBX developers include Ken Ellis, Arthur Berry, Tim Gantz and Jeff Malarney, who each bring substantial experience in their respective fields in waterpark development, planning, operations and tourism.
Ellis, president and CEO of Aquatic Development Group, the premier waterpark design/build company in the U.S., is also co-owner with Berry of the Camelback Resort, home to Aquatopia, the largest indoor waterpark in the Northeast, and Camelbeach outdoor waterpark.
“This has been an extraordinary project because of my own personal involvement and vested interest in H2OBX,” Ellis said. “H2OBX is going to be incredibly innovative because we have the full force of the industry’s best people behind it.”
Gantz is the former owner and operator of America’s Largest Outdoor Waterpark, Noah’s Ark.
Malarney is a Manteo resident, a former Navy judge advocate general, has been intimately involved in the North Carolina vacation rental industry, recently serving two terms on the N.C. Real Estate Commission, and is a practicing attorney.