By Ken Storey
It’s finally official that Harry Potter is expanding beyond Islands of Adventure and into Universal Studios. As part of the major expansion a new Hogwarts Express train ride will connect the two areas with construction pointing to the Islands of Adventure station being just outside of the current Potter area. This means that at least part of the new expansion will be in the current Lost Continent land. That land was already cut in half with the layover of Harry Potter in half of the land. The current smaller Lost Continent faces huge crowds already due to the massive success of Wizard World of Harry Potter next door. With the new addition these crowds are only expected to grow.
There have been rumors for some time now that Lost Continent would undergo a remodel with its carnival games shifting over to the Jurassic Park area instead. This would allow for larger pathways within the Lost Continent that would help relieve the crowd issues the land has experienced. Recent permits now confirm that games will be coming to Jurassic Park. The permits state that 627 sq ft of sidewalk and 417 sq ft of landscaping will be replaced with a 1,044 sq ft building area. This lines up with the rumor of the new games replacing the extended queue of the River Adventure ride.
|The confirmation at the new games was found in the project name.|
Now rumors have it that these games are just part of a larger expansion of the Jurassic Park area. Other rumors rounded up from across the internet for the land include:
- A family friendly wooden coaster that will travel through the amber mines seen in the films. The Gravity Group will likely be the coaster builder if these rumors are correct.
- A dark ride built in the bottom floor of the Discovery Center. This ride would use the DNA ride film from the first movie, then will take riders past an active lab that similar to the one currently found within the Discovery Center before going through a storage area, possibly outside, past audio-animatronic dinosaurs.
- One to two flat rides themed to Jurassic Park. Both Seuss Landing and Marvel feature themed flat rides already. Rumors for Jurassic Park’s include a paratrooper style kiddie ride and a small log flume that would be the answer for kids who are too small to ride the River Adventure.
- New themed food and merchandise carts are also expected.
All of this is expected to open by 2015 just in time for the theatrical release of Jurassic Park 4.
Here is one of the letters attached to the permit paperwork.
Here is the permit information if you want to check out all the attachments.