Universal Orlando to share 'major news' - the fourth park?

July 26, 2019, 2:20 PM · Could we getting next week the long-awaited confirmation that Universal Orlando is building a new theme park?

We've detailed the site plans before, and crews are working on site for the new park, though Universal has remained mum about the project to outsiders until now. Universal Orlando is planning a press conference on August 1 at the Orange County Convention Center to make an announcement to reveal "major news" about the resort.

Remember that the construction site for Universal's new park is across Universal Blvd. from the Convention Center, so that might explain the choice of a non-Universal facility for this press conference.

Of course, there's always the chance that this has nothing to do with the new park. Perhaps Universal is going to announce that Hagrid's Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure is ramping up to full-time operation and the Convention Center will be the new location of the queue's entrance, given the ride's popularity.

Or... not.

The new theme park — Universal Orlando's fourth or third, depending upon how you count Volcano Bay — is tipped to include attractions themed to Dreamworks Animation franchises including How to Train Your Dragon, perhaps Illumination franchises including The Secret Life of Pets, another Wizarding World of Harry Potter land — likely from the Fantastic Beasts era — and Orlando's installation of Super Nintendo World. The name has been leaked as "Universal's Fantastic Worlds," but a trademark dispute might take that name off the table.

Universal has developed a reputation for holding off until the last possible moment to announce new attractions, even after construction is well underway, leading me to joke that Universal wouldn't actually confirm this park until after it had been open for at least a year. But Universal Creative has been bringing personnel into Orlando for the project, and contracts will be going out for location construction, so it is about to become impossible to keep any type of lid on this news much longer.

And with Disney using its upcoming D23 Expo to crank up the hype machine for new developments at Walt Disney World over the next few years, it makes sense for Universal to get into the game by enticing people to plan their upcoming Orlando-area vacations around a new Universal Orlando park rather than new rides at that resort down south.

We will be on top of all the news on the first, so stay tuned for all the official information from Universal Orlando.

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Replies (14)

July 26, 2019 at 3:38 PM

So, question for you... which company uses the smarter marketing plan to hype new attractions, Disney or Universal? Disney tends to make announcements years in advance. Universal waits til the last minute. I think I prefer Universal's method, which generally leads to less disappointment if they can't get things up and running right away or timelines aren't met.

July 26, 2019 at 3:41 PM

Robert, are you invited for the press presentation?
If not they should.

July 26, 2019 at 4:03 PM

If Universal build this, and have a good transport system in place linking the parks to hotels - then i for one will in all likely hood be changing plans and staying over at Universal as my base.

At the moment, it's simply numbers that makes me stay over at Disney with them having 4 parks.

Hope this is a game changer, and follows a proper theme - rather than a mix mash of much the same.

July 26, 2019 at 6:18 PM

So exciting. Hoping for Lord of the Rings and much more, although I would have thought that Universal would wait until Disney finishes playing their strongest hands (Star Wars and Marvel).

July 26, 2019 at 7:04 PM

I think Illumination should stay at Universal Studios Florida while DreamWorks properties should move to Fantastic Worlds. While Illumination frequently outgrosses DreamWorks (and Disney Animation), I don’t think they have the scope to support more than attraction versus a fully immersive land.

July 26, 2019 at 7:45 PM

Daniel, it’s a given that a third (fourth) Universal Gate would have something from the Wizarding World. As much as I’d like to see it, placing a second fantasy setting like LotR in the same park is bit of a stretch.

July 27, 2019 at 1:56 PM

You do realize they do not have the rights to that particular IP, right? Neither Universal nor Disney have succeeded in obtaining theme park rights for Lord of the Rings and neither has any claim to the film series. Hobbitual Offenders can't wish this into existence for any theme park so far...

July 27, 2019 at 1:58 PM

Hoping the rumors of a Classic Monsters land is real. Nintendo Land will be it's anchor and awesome, no doubt. But Classic Monsters would rock.

July 27, 2019 at 2:19 PM

@Dave Bakas That sure would be some amazing news, if they announced Middle Earth for FW.
But news about a new theme park is exiting in itself. What was the last time a major theme park opened in the US?

July 27, 2019 at 2:44 PM

As Andrew said above, the transportation link between old Universal and new Universal is of major importance. It won't make or break the new park, but it will be quite important, and I hope they really put time, effort, and money into making this as seamless as possible, because taking a bus would NOT be ideal, and would really make it a drag for people to enjoy all 3 (I consider Volcano Bay to be a water park, not a theme park) parks in one trip.

July 27, 2019 at 3:15 PM

LEGOLAND New York will be the next all new theme park in the USA and Lost Island in Iowa is being fast tracked with immediate zoning approvals. Evermore opened last year in Utah.
Meanwhile, no sign of any theme park developer getting rights to Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit and with Amazon Prime being home to new television series based on this IP rather than either Disney or Comcast/NBC Universal, not looking likely for anyone for time being.

July 27, 2019 at 3:26 PM

I know it’s highly unlikely and they may never ever return to a future universal park around the world but I would love an epic return of the 90’s attractions that we all grew up watching at universal Orlando at the original USF park like ET which is still their, Jaws, King Kong, back to the future, earthquake, ghostbusters a new movie coming out, terminator a new movie coming out, Twister, water world, etc. if it doesn’t come to the new park I would love to see it come if universal Orlando has space to add fifth another park in its future expansion on those 500+ acres of land on Kirkman road. A Waterworld area is coming to universal studios Beijing and ET is supposed to be coming to universal studios Korea much later on in the next decade.

July 27, 2019 at 4:04 PM

The new park should include Jurassic World.

July 27, 2019 at 11:00 PM

I agree the parking lot is not the best use of space, but this is going to be epic.

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