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The Gold Striker roller coaster under construction at California's Great America Park in Santa Clara Tuesday, March 26, 2013. The new ride is the latest thing in wooden roller coasters. Great America claims Gold Striker will be the tallest (at 108.2 feet) and fastest (53.7 MPH) wooden roller coaster in Northern California. (Patrick Tehan/Staff)

SANTA CLARA -- It's a twister that guarantees riders give up more than just a few timid whoo-hoo's. But the blood-curdling screams are being silenced as Great America's latest attraction -- the Gold Striker roller coaster -- was shut down this week after the shrieks got a few decibels too loud for its not-so-amused neighbors.

Now, the theme park is busy sound-proofing Northern California's fastest and tallest wooden coaster in time for the Fourth of July: They're building a new tunnel to muffle the sounds of the wheeled carts loaded with screaming banshees.

While thrill-seekers have been raving about the ride since it opened June 1, nearby businesses have not.

At issue, a noise-level agreement reached with neighboring Prudential Real Estate properties and a stomach-dropping turn that transforms the ride into a max-diaphragm-inducing screamfest. Park officials said it's a perfect storm, noise-wise -- the location of the turn, the sound of the coaster thrusting through the curves topped by the vocalizations ended up "causing the coaster to slightly exceed the allowable noise standards."

"I don't know if it's any noisier than other rides," said local amusement park blogger Kristopher Rowberry, who has ridden the Gold Striker 25 to 30 times. "But there are a lot of surprises that pop out at you. It's a very intense ride."

The coaster was shut down on Monday as Great America began building a second tunnel to baffle the sounds of too much fun. Even though plans are to reopen it Thursday, news of the closure spread fast in the roller coaster enthusiast community, which got an unwelcome scare.

"Everyone was panicking," said Rowberry, 29. "We had been waiting seven years for this ride, and the assumption was that it could be a long time before it reopened."

Rowberry said the Gold Striker is the park's premier attraction, and they feared any extended closure would derail a possible Great America comeback.

"Most people see this as a huge investment in the park, a start of a revival for a park that had been going downhill," Rowberry said.

"This didn't come out of left field," said Great America spokesman Roger Ross. "We slightly exceeded noise standards and are doing adjustments everyone agreed to. It's not like someone came by and said, 'Hey, shut that coaster down.' "

He said the new tunnel will curb the shrieks and won't take away from the experience.

Rowberry was reassured when he heard the news that it would be a brief closure, and agreed that a tunnel addition is a fine solution to the problem.

"There's a reason people put tunnels on roller coasters, and that's because they're awesome," he said. "This could make the Gold Striker even more awesome."

Prudential representatives could not be reached for comment Tuesday. The company previously reached a private settlement agreement with Great America after litigation was filed concerning noise levels at neighboring Prudential properties.

But Ross reiterated that they are working together, along with the city of Santa Clara, to make sure everyone's happy with the outcome -- including riders.

"I think the park has everybody's best interest in mind," said a satiated Rowberry. "Not just Prudential but fans of the coaster. We want a lasting attraction that will be around for a long time; if it's closed for a few days so it can be open for 90 years, that's a good thing."

Contact Eric Kurhi at 408-920-5852. Follow him at Twitter.com/erickurhi.