Get ready to be thrilled! The Lost Island Theme Park is closer to becoming a reality.

The Courier reports that the Lost Island Theme Park passed its first zoning test! Hooray! That means we're that much closer to having a theme park in Waterloo. The report states that the "Waterloo Planning, Programming and Zoning Commission voted 6-0 in approval of rezoning 159 acres of farm land for the estimated $100 million project."

Most are supportive of the project stating that it will be "great for the economy" and "add to the quality of life for families" in the area. Those who oppose are residents that would live close to the park. Their main concerns are about noise. To appease concerned residents, the commission required the park to provide a buffer between the rides and the Summerland Park neighborhood.

Gary and Becky Bertch are the owners of Lost Island Waterpark who proposed the project and are hoping to have the new park open by summer of 2020. It will be located south of the Lost Island Waterpark and Isle Casino Hotel Waterloo off of Shaulis Road.

Waterloo Planning, Programming, and Zoning Commission
Waterloo Planning, Programming, and Zoning Commission

The park reportedly would operate "May through September with hours from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. on weekdays, going until 9 p.m. or 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays."

Before the project can move forward, it must get final zoning approval from the City Council on August 5. In addition to zoning changes, the city is also working on a "development agreement that would provide an estimated $14 million in bond support from the city and additional state grants." All must be approved by the Council before moving any further.

We're not there yet, but we're getting closer to riding those coasters!

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