Instead of merely seeing set designs, park patrons will get an immersive attraction that exceeds Disney. Universal will be a destination attraction.
From reading the many reviews of The Wizarding World, I hope they improve upon it instead of a mere copycat. Some shortcomings are low capacity shows, lack of slower family style attractions, and little for kids to do. There is much source material to pull, but little land to do it. Pity.
(Sorry, just had to add that no LOL)
This will be an exact replica of Orlando's. If it was Diagon Alley, it would be fine. See the discussion for more.
I think they will revise the tram ride. The upper lot where there is the tram boarding area and towards the end of the tram ride route can be ripped up easily and turned into Hogwarts. No retrofitting necessary. There must be 20 acres available to turn USH into a major theme park.
If they are smart, they will design into it potential for large shows like fireworks displays, special effect ladden wizards shows, and plenty of family rides. Why not add a train ride, taking advantage of the hilly views just like what the movie did? You can board the train in a station just like what Harry Potter did and ride towards Hogsmeade.
There is plenty of potential if Universal is smart to do it right.
Harry Potter if built will more than likely replace existing attractions. There are numerous attractions that are ready to go - Terminator 3D, Shrek 3D, Waterworld and the neighboring Nickelodeon area. Another possibility to expand the park's boundaries would be to remove the Gibson Amphitheatre.
Tearing down existing rides and attractions is simple. Building new ones is what takes so long.
Finally, I'd like to point out that Universal Studios Hollywood is very much a tourist park. In some ways, more so than Disneyland. Tourists frequent the park for the studio tour and its connections to Hollywood. The fact is more tourists visit Southern California because of its connection to Hollywood and movies and television rather than theme parks.
Disney will finish California Adventure next summer. I don't know what all this talk about Phase 2 is. The project is over June 2012 and the addition of new attractions will slow significantly. The next major project in Anaheim will more than likely involve parking and then eventually the property south of Katella.
I wrote what I felt needed to be done to get the work done quickly. Gibson is not part of the theme park. Exactly what are proposing by citing numerous attractions. They are all around Universal's upper lot in patches with Terminator in one area and Waterworld in another. The Wizarding World will not integrate in the park as a separate land. It will be significantly scaled down.
Demolishing existing attractions on a hillside is a big risk. That's why I said they should look for virgin territory. A big patch of undeveloped land. As for fireworks, neighbors can complain, but it happens even with Disneyland.
The location of Hogswart and Hogsmeade can take out significant portions of the existing Studios Tour if they decide on a new direction for the park. (The article doesn't say that. I'm only saying this since this new announcement has changed everything.)
Bit disappointed. If they do Diagon Alley and attractions that haven't yet been seen, I'll be pleased. But knowing Universal, they probably won't.
It was my understanding that Universal ended the terror tram drop off in 2010 due to noise complaints from the neighbors on Blair Drive. I didn't attend HHN this or last year. Is that correct?
I think it's obvious that if Universal proceeds with this plan they will redevelop a portion of the existing theme park on the upper lot. They've got more than one attraction that is dated. Waterworld- a cool show, but a box office disaster from 1995. Terminator 3D- a movie franchise that peaked in 1991 with the theatrical release of Terminator 2.
One would be to tear down T2:3-D, Coke Soak, Mels Drive-in, possibly House of Horrors and the old Wild West Stadium on the western portion of the upper lot.
The other would be to tear down the Gibson Amphitheater(which was rumored to be replaced some time ago), the Water world Stadium and probably Shrek 4-D and the Curious George area on the East part of the upper lot.
Maybe the lower lot but a lot of the soundstages they still use for production. Off to the side of Transformers would be a possibility but USH is first and foremost a movie and TV studio so reducing production capabilities may not happen for Harry Potter.
With a little creativity you could utilize from a rethemed T:2 (already on the chopping block and a nice transition from the British section), bridge over the turn around (a la downtown Disney in CA), demo Saddle Ranch, and all along the backside of CityWalk (FJ's giant show building could get stuck in the far corner nearest Jurassic Parking). A fair amount of property.
Would require some heavy rethinking of the entrance to be certain, but no more complicated than the DCA 2.0 work that's happening.
Only question here is how that all jives with the cranky neighbors.