Should Knott's Berry Farm Build A Parking Garage?

Knott's Berry Farm

Knott's Berry Farm Park Entrance Plaza

Knott's Berry Farm is one of the most popular theme parks in the US and the most visited park in the Cedar Fair chain (as of 2019, the last year the park ran for a full year). But this park, after a century of operation, the park seems to be out of expansion space.

The park is entirely landlocked, surrounded on all sides by roads, meaning any further expansion for this park will be difficult. But the park shows no sign of slowing down in its growth, so how can it continue to grow amid these difficult conditions.

Knott's situation is hardly unique. Most South Californian theme parks are similarly landlocked and have had to make difficult choices to allow for more expansion. Universal Studios Hollywood has redeveloped a large portion of their active studio, removing and relocating soundstage space to allow for more theme park expansion space. Disneyland found a way to build an entire additional theme park without needing additional land, as well as numerous expansions beyond the original limits of Disneyland itself.

Could Knott's Berry Farm learn from these two parks' examples?

GhostRider Wooden Roller Coaster at Sunset Knott's Berry Farm

If the park were to buy land nearby the park but not within the city block which holds the theme park itself, they could relocate some of their backstage infrastructures away from their current location, allowing for some additional park space. But this would only grand minimal expansion space, as much of this infrastructure is located just around GhostRider in a space that would be difficult to use for much else.

But could, and should, they build a parking garage?

This is probably the much more likely possibility. There is more than enough space to build a parking garage on top of existing surface parking within the existing limits of Knott's Berry Farm. This is what Disney did with their Mickey and Friends parking structure, allowing for the construction of Disney California Adventure. While they would be more limited in terms of the amount of space they could expand, building a parking garage could certainly allow more room to expand over parking lot spaces near the park if they were not needed anymore.

Currently, a Giga Coaster from B&M is rumored to be coming soon to Knott's Berry Farm, and if this rumor is true, this new attraction would almost certainly require additional space beyond the park's current limits, almost definitely over what is now the parking lot. But a more extensive parking garage could open up even more space.

Snoopy In a Red Suit Peanuts Stage Show Knott's Berry Farm

Knott's Berry Farm may have entirely utilized the space within the existing park, but that does not mean the park has nowhere left to expand. By reworking the space outside the park, they could make room for several new rides and additional park space, just as other parks have before them. For a park as popular and profitable as Knott's Berry Farm, expansion is inevitable, and this is a way to make sure it continues to happen.

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