On Thursday night, Kings Island revealed their plans for 2020 - a new coaster from B&M (the makers of Diamondback and Banshee) named Orion. It will be 287 feet tall with a 300 foot drop and a top speed of 91mph. In addition, the current "X-Base" section of the park (where Flight of Fear is located and where Firehawk was prior to its removal last year) will be rethemed to "Area 72" (a play on the infamous "Area 51" US military site that has been used for testing experimental aircraft among other things, with a nod to the year Kings Island opened). The park also confirmed that the popular Grand Carnivale celebration will be returning next year as well, but no further details have been released on that yet.
Work is well underway now. The former Mitchell's Fish Market building was demolished this week and Barnes & Noble is scheduled to close around the 7th so I'm sure work will begin on demolishing part of that building soon as well.
Further details have been released regarding the plans for the Ovation site.
According to WCPO, up to 900 residences are planned for the site, in addition to the previously-announced concert venue. It could take up to 8-10 years to fully develop the site, but renderings show what the project could look like when it's done:
Since NAP purchased Newport on the Levee back in December, they've been promising major changes that will hopefully breathe new life into the shopping/entertainment complex. The first big sign of changes came last week when a construction fence popped up surrounding the former Mitchell's Fish Market building. Today, they released concept drawings of planned changes, with major construction scheduled to start in a few months. See https://www.newportonthelevee.com/the-new-newport-on-the-levee for full images and details as well as River City News for further information.
More exciting development announced for Newport, this time on the site of a parking lot next to the World Peace Bell at 4th and York. The existing building at the site will be demolished, but the bell/monument will remain. No timeline has been announced for construction development. This will add yet another new hotel near the Levee, which has seen the addition of a Hampton Inn (on the site of a former somewhat run-down Travelodge) and the Aloft at the Aqua on the Levee project in the past 5 years or so. More information on the plans for this project can be found at River City News.
I used to visit about once a year with my family as a kid, and started frequenting the park again in the mid-2000s before becoming a passholder in 2009. It's amazing how much the park has changed in the last 10-15 years.