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CONFIRMED: New Universal Park

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Universal Orlando to Hold Media Event at the Orange County Convention Center on Aug. 1

 
Theme parks hold media events quite frequently nowadays, as they allow these companies to advertise upcoming attractions and special events before they officially debut to Guests.

The Universal Orlando Resort is going to hold a media event at the Orange County Convention Center on August 1, 2019, but this one could be much more exciting than any other event the company has held in the past 20 years.

Indeed, according to rumors, it appears that Universal may finally be ready to officially announce its plans for the massive property the company purchased just a few miles south of the existing Universal Orlando Resort. Once completely developed, this area could include up to two new parks, multiple hotels, a CityWalk-like entertainment district, and much more.

The announcement could also include more information about other future additions (including the new show replacing Terminator 2:3D and the new Jurassic Park roller coaster), but that's still unclear at this time. We certainly can't wait to see what Universal Orlando has in store for the near future!

https://www.orlandoparksnews.com/2019/07/universal-orlando-to-hold-media-event.html?fbclid=IwAR3qyYnTgFMa6e7ym8yaF-JSYCLFp4KR_YB75XdvpzKlAEDYWn6u9vOeZlI

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CONFIRMED!

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Universal Orlando Officially Announces Plans for New "Epic Universe" Theme Park

Just a few minutes ago, Universal Orlando announced the addition of its third theme park, Universal’s Epic Universe, an experience genuinely worthy of its bold moniker.
 
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Universal’s Epic Universe will offer an entirely new level of experiences that will forever redefine theme park entertainment. Guests will venture beyond their wildest imagination, traveling into beloved stories and through vibrant lands on adventures where the journey is as astounding as the destination. The new location will feature a theme park, an entertainment center, hotels, shops, restaurants, and more. Ultimately, this expansion will create more space and freedom to let loose and create lasting memories with the people you love.
 
Here’s a peek at the logo and proximity map of Universal’s Epic Universe.
 
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RENDERINGS: © 2019 Universal Orlando Resort. All Rights Reserved.

https://www.orlandoparksnews.com/2019/08/universal-orlando-officially-announces.html?fbclid=IwAR0hsPry2hGvU3cwTPMZ_Z2IGTUr_n6O8iYVTzBnzKOIt7gttScjzSG4_lk

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A bit more info in this article...

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 BY 

Universal Orlando announces new theme park, Universal’s Epic Universe

The suspense has finally come to an end – Universal Orlando Resort has announced its new theme park, Universal’s Epic Universe.

epic universe
The official logo for the new park

The park was officially announced today, Aug. 1, during an event attended by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings, Tom Williams and Brian Roberts.

epic universe
A map of the location for Universal’s Epic Universe in relation to the rest of Universal Orlando Resort

Universal’s Epic Universe will be located on a 750-acre site near the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, specifically south of Sand Lake Road and east of Universal Boulevard. The new park will also feature its own entertainment district, restaurants, hotels and shops. The park will employ 14,000 Team Members and the base rate of pay will be $15 per hour.

epic universe
Concept art for the new theme park

“Our new park represents the single-largest investment Comcast NBCUniversal has made in its theme park business and in Florida overall,” said Brian L. Roberts, chairman and CEO of Comcast Corporation. “It reflects the tremendous excitement we have for the future of our theme park business and for our entire company’s future in Florida.”

Universal is not answering any questions on what lands will be in the new park for now, though rumors have been circulating that Universal Monsters, How to Train Your Dragon, Fantastic Beasts, and Nintendo will be involved.

Tom Williams, chairman and CEO of Universal Parks & Resorts, said at the presentation that they don’t want to unveil all their plans for the park just yet because of competition, but “a Universe is bigger than a World.”

“Our vision for Epic Universe is historic, said Williams. “It will build on everything we have done and become the most immersive and innovative theme park we have ever created. It is an investment in our business, our industry, our team members and our community.”

As for transportation to and from the park, Williams says it takes about 12 minutes to get from the current parks to the site of Epic Universe. Universal is pushing for the new train from South Florida to have a stop at the Orange County Convention Center, which is right by the new park.

More details on Universal’s Epic Universe will be revealed over time.

We’ll have video of the entire conference up shortly on our YouTube channel, stay tuned for a link.

https://attractionsmagazine.com/universal-new-park-epic-universe/

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Checkmate! Locked up the lucrative Orange County Convention Center area. Now if the South Florida train comes to fruition with a stop at the Orange County Convention Center they've showed their hand. Not to mention they are a "Gold Key Attraction Sponsor" of the Convention Center. Good move, Universal and Orange County. Done and done. 

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This writer goes into depth dissecting the new parks concept art they released during the announcement ceremony.

He admits right off the bat that it is only conceptual and there is a lot of room for errors in figuring out what each section is.

But he's basing his interpretations on previously released info and rumors.

It's a long article so it's best to just follow the link.

https://www.orlandoweekly.com/Blogs/archives/2019/08/05/heres-every-detail-we-could-find-in-universals-epic-universe-concept-art

 

This is just one small part

 

Guests will enter the park via a set of arches, similar to those found at other Universal parks, but with a steampunk-meets-sci-fi, galactic-inspired design. The park is laid out with an updated version of the traditional hub-and-spoke design with an oval-shaped central hub corridor anchored by a significant water feature that stretches the entire length of the park. 

While it may not at first glance have many similarities to the more traditional Main Street, U.S.A. style entrance retail corridor, the lagoon anchored hub corridor seen in the concept art is lined with plenty of large buildings that will be more traditional retail, dining, and guest service outlets. Unlike the individual lands, where many of the specifics have been set for some time now, the hub corridor is still going through design revisions that could still dramatically alter the final product from what is seen in the concept art. 

While closer to a more traditional hub-and-spoke design, Disney used a similar garden-like design similar in their most recent park, Shanghai Disneyland. There the Gardens of Imagination central corridor is where classic attractions, like the Dumbo spinner and the carousel, can be found, along with certain dining and retail venues. The Epic Universe concept art seems to show a comparable design with certain rides, restaurants, and retail venues scattered along the corridor. A carousel has been mentioned by multiple insiders as one of the attractions to be found in this area, though the concept art does not confirm this.

 

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1 hour ago, Travisma said:

Guests will enter the park via a set of arches, similar to those found at other Universal parks, but with a steampunk-meets-sci-fi, galactic-inspired design. The park is laid out with an updated version of the traditional hub-and-spoke design with an oval-shaped central hub corridor anchored by a significant water feature that stretches the entire length of the park. 

Sounds cool!

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Things omitted from the press announcement...

The Velocicoaster might be Orlando's next big thrill ride

Last week's Epic Universe announcement by Universal Orlando was impressive, but rumors point to it having been planned as an even larger unveiling, thanks in part to a slew of upcoming attractions at the existing resorts. 

Multiple sources have privately stated that the original plan for the August 1 announcement was to focus on new projects headed to the current resort, then finish off the press event with a "one more thing" style announcement regarding the new south campus plans. 

Originally to be included in the announcement were a new stunt show rumored for Universal Studios Florida, new attractions for Volcano Bay, more details on the upcoming Phase 2 of the Endless Summer resort, and new offerings for CityWalk. The already-under-construction coaster in the Jurassic Park area of Islands of Adventure was also to be included. 

Ahead of the press event, Universal even teased the new roller coaster announcement on Instagram with a photo of dinosaur eggs captioned "Something is hatching... 👀."

IMAGE VIA UNIVERSAL ORLANDO/INSTAGRAM
  • Image via Universal Orlando/Instagram

Apparently, the press event was scaled back to focus exclusively on the new park. It's unclear why the other announcements were withheld, but it's thought that they will be released over the next few months as Disney rolls out multiple new offerings and announcements of its own. 

Despite the lack of any official announcement, a trademark applicationfiled on July 24 points to a potential name for the new coaster" "VELOCICOASTER," for use "in the nature of an amusement park ride." The name aligns with rumors that the coaster will be themed to the velociraptors that were popular in the Jurassic World set of films. 

Known internally as Project 791, the new coaster will dramatically alter the skyline of Islands of Adventure. Located on the site of the long-closed Triceratops Encounter attraction and along the waterfront near the Discovery Center, site clearing has already begun. 

It's rumored that the Discovery Center may also receive a major update ahead of the new coaster's opening. Based as a tour of the raptor paddocks, guests will board the high thrills coaster then move into one of two show scenes on the ride before being launched into what is known by coaster fans as a ‘spaghetti bowl' with multiple twists, turns, inversions, and other elements all within a small area. The ‘bowl' will be made even more intense with rockwork and water features. A top hat element, a steep hill that a coaster nearly stalls out on as it crests over, will make the coaster a new focal point for Islands of Adventure. After leaving the ‘bowl,’ the coaster hits another launch element where it will race along the waterfront and through the canal area between Jurassic Park and Hogsmeade before making a U-turn, passing once again along the waterfront, through the last show scene, and then returning to the station. The coaster may reach a top speed in excess of 70 mph. 

It's thought that the new coaster may be the first step of a multi-phase overhaul to the Jurassic Park area to become Jurassic World. A Jurassic World land was floated as a potential franchise for the new Epic Universe park, but concept art now seems to confirm that is not the case, leaving the Jurassic Park area ripe for a redo. Blue, the raptor from Jurassic World, already meets guests at IOA's Jurassic Park area. Construction fence logos around the new construction site also seem to point to the Jurassic World design. 

Universal Studios Hollywood's Jurassic Park shoot-the-chute flume ride was recently overhauled and rethemed to Jurassic World. Early reviews point the updated Hollywood version of the ride being a hit. Universal has yet to indicate if the Orlando version of the water ride will be re-themed, but Universal officials have not denied the possibility. 

The VELOCICOASTER is expected to open in early 2021. 
 

 

 

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Thanks for the update.  At least that answers the question about what was happening months ago on the waterfront behind the Discovery Center.  It used to be our favorite "quiet" spot to get in some shade and relax for a while. Was so disappointed when it was closed off during our last visit.  But, this is exciting news for coaster people!

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