Construction is underway on Universal's new Harry Potter coaster
An Insider posted an update to Reddit today on the new "coaster experience" that Universal Orlando is building in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Hogsmeade, to replace the now-demolished Dragon Challenge Bolliger & Mabillard dueling inverted coasters.
Apparently, Universal's contractor now is pouring the footers for the track supports for the new coaster, and the track supports are on site, awaiting installation.
"It seems like it is going to be a suspended/inverted coaster, as the support-to-track connectors are 'underneath' the support structure," the poster wrote.
That track placement would support the chatter that the new Harry Potter coaster will be North America's first Mack Rides Inverted Powered Coaster, the same model as the Arthur coaster at Europa Park and Dragon Gliders at Motiongate Dubai.
I have not been yet on either of those coasters (the Dreamworks Animation indoor land where the "How to Train Your Dragon"-themed Dragon Gliders is located was not open when I visited Motiongate, and I haven't been to Europa Park yet), but both provide an excellent platform for a more narrative-driven experience than your typical roller coaster ride.
In that sense, these installations are more like Universal's Intamin-designed Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts than some Mack Rides family coaster you might have ridden somewhere else — except that the track will be above you on this new ride instead of below you as it is on Gringotts. Visitors ride in four-person cars that can rotate under the car's mount, allowing designers to direct your attention along the ride. On-board audio also is supported, allowing for music and narration. The Arthur installation won the TEA's THEA Award for Best New Ride System this year.
A look at Europa Park's Arthur coaster in action
Universal has not yet confirmed the ride system for the new attraction, other than to say it will be a family friendly "coaster experience." Nor has Universal revealed setting or theme for the ride. It has, however, announced that the new Harry Potter coaster will open sometime in 2019 at Universal Orlando's Islands of Adventure.
i love harry potter i have seen is movies read is books, he is awesome wizard ever. and i did not even notice they have a roller coaster i was so shocked and surprised baout it
I've been hoping for this over the motorbike coaster idea. Seems like an absolutely perfect fit for what Universal needs from this attraction, which is something to gobble up crowds, fit into the land better than Dueling Dragons, and provide an alternative for children who do not meet Forbidden Journey's 48-inch height requirement. Should allow them to tell a more engaging story as well. Can't wait for more details!
I do hope this is a family attraction - that the whole family can ride, without it being too kid friendly or too adrenalin fuelled. Furthermore i do hope the screens they use are used to compliment the attraction, and not actually make up the main aspect.
Universal is beginning to seriously lack on roller coasters and as an annual pass holder this is dissappointing and I am sorry to say I will be trading in my Universal Pass for a Busch Gardens pass next year simply for the roller coaster aspect.
Sounds promising. I can see how an inverted coaster could work well with theming and show elements. Of course, a new Potter ride is the only way that Universal can provide some competition in 2019 to the coming crowd magnet known as Star Wars Land...
Went on Arthur in Europa Park and I can only say very good things about it. A perfect blend of narratives and roller coasters, though I’m sure Universal will take that to the next level with Harry Potter.
I've been on Dragon gliders in Dubai and it is a fantastic ride! Some great use of moving figures and interactive screens so it will be good to see how Universal use this...
too bad its in orlando, and not at hollywood
Let's make their rides,easier for the BIG GUY too ..Disney has,done a great job with this while Universal totally ducks on this,issue
They used a simpler version of this system, made by Zamperla, on the Puss In Boots ride at the Singapore park. That turned out really well - a lot more fun than you'd expect for a ride model like this - so I've high hopes for what they can do with a Potter-level budget.
I like that Universal is replacing another thrill ride with a Disney type family coaster.
This sounds perfect! I was really impressed with the Arthur Coaster at Europa-Park, even though I'm not a fan of the franchise. It's a perfect blend of mild thrills and storytelling, and I can see it working really well with a franchise like Harry Potter. Looking forward to it!
Just last week I saw a deep dig with the Florida-requisite dewatering pumps. I wasn't a fan of the Dueling Dragons coaster, so I hope the new ride is a better complement to the Wizarding World.
This could be interesting, but it has to fill a number of needs:
Please make it comparable to dragon challenge. Disney has plenty of family friendly rides, lets keep Universal for grown ups.
I, for one, am completely in the use-all-the-screens-you-want camp. If it is to be a Forbidden Forest attraction, then they should use all the tools in their arsenal, including screens. Practical effects, projections, both with and without screens, and even smells. I think to avoid screens entirely or try to have too few would hamstring the project within the IP.
I grew up at Busch Gardens Williamsburg and the park favorite was the big bad wolf and it was inverted and it was so smooth and fun and such a great intro coaster to a young kid who was scared. After one ride I was addicted. The cool thing about it was it went through a German village and gave you the perspective that you were the wolf moving fast. I miss it so much. So I am excited about this. I will also add some cities have inverted transportation instead of above track subways and they are brilliant and smooth and I wish every city would adopt this you can glide right over traffic and swing around corners.
I agree JC VanHouten. When well used and combined with other mediums, screens are an important part of an IP like Harry Potter.
Love the screens. Always pro-screen. Universal's four top tier rides - Transformers, Spider-Man, and the two HP attractions - have heavy screen use, and they're all exhilarating, next-level attractions. I'm sure they will mix them in perfectly for this.
Who likes screens more than actual roller coasters? Crazy fans...
I love Spiderman, etc, but I find that these type of rides get boring after awhile especially if the story line remains the same over several years. If screens are the intent, it would be nice if you could get random storylines.
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