Universal's Epic Universe News & General Discussion

Alicia

Premium Member
Jul 17, 2014
9,498
Orlando
Honestly find it strange FB would have that big of an expansion plot. NIntendo? Makes sense. I know it’s HP, but still
If you're talking about the gray area, that's not for FB, it's for 1 or 2 new lands later down the road. Any FB expansion is within the red area. But sorry, we are getting speculative in the wrong thread.
 
  • Like
Reactions: therock and Mike S

LintemuthStudios

Veteran Member
Nov 7, 2016
4,972
Fantastic Worlds
I mean, Hogsmeade in IOA and MSHI can already qualify as crown jewels of IOA in their own right, considering the love and care that has been placed with the two of them. Especially the former, now that Hagrid's officially open and running.

Looking at the article from Coaster Kings, and it does truly make me fascinated by how small SNW will be compared to even the likes of the Universal Monsters at-launch.
I was talking about if Nintendo was at USF. I like Diagon Alley, but it needs another ride badly (no, I don't count Hogwarts Express) to count as a great land.
 

Mike S

Veteran Member
Dec 10, 2015
5,051
Florida
I'm a bit conflicted on this. On one hand, having it in Epic Universe means that there's more expansion space. On the other, there was expansion space in USF if they really needed it (ET and/or Simpsons). Both parks needed a big draw. Both parks needed a crown jewel of a land. It's a weird situation. But at least we're getting it and an entire new theme park around it to boot.
Even then how would they make the current area flow into an expansion? And if it ends up being a different Nintendo IP altogether, why not have that for the opening?
Here's how I am to understand the layout personally. (So far, 1 out of 4 main lands correct.)



EDIT: Oh, but to answer your question, within that red area for FB, there's actually a 6-acre expansion spot just for FB.
That expansion spot should be for a new land, not FB. Also what do they do when these two are used up? This park looks very locked in.
If you're talking about the gray area, that's not for FB, it's for 1 or 2 new lands later down the road. Any FB expansion is within the red area. But sorry, we are getting speculative in the wrong thread.
Ah, good.
 

VolcanoAye

Member
Sep 15, 2019
786
This park looks very locked in.
Every world except HTTYD has expansion plots for entire lands, not to mention an entire new world expansion plot. From what I’ve read, this park has waaay more expansion land than prior universal parks
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Mike S

LintemuthStudios

Veteran Member
Nov 7, 2016
4,972
Fantastic Worlds
I meant instead of Mario as that’s something USF really needed. As it stands it’ll easily be Uni’s weakest park.
Still money. Building a new theme park costs a lot, and they're already opening two different additions at IOA, a new theme park in Beijing, a new land at USH and USJ, and revamping USS during this time frame.
 

Mike S

Veteran Member
Dec 10, 2015
5,051
Florida
Still money. Building a new theme park costs a lot, and they're already opening two different additions at IOA, a new theme park in Beijing, a new land at USH and USJ, and revamping USS during this time frame.
I’d argue IoA was good after Hagrid.

That’s just little ol’ me though.

USF needed and still needs something big and actually good.
 
  • Like
Reactions: therock and RFRees

Happytycho

Member
Mar 1, 2017
562
Tomorrow, Tues. Dec 17th, the Orange County Board of County Commissioners is scheduled to take two important votes relating to the development of Universal's Epic Universe. The Kirkman Road Extension Agreement and Universal's Land Use Plan Amendment are two of the largest remaining obstacles in EU planning before the avalanche of building permits can begin.

The proposed Kirkman Road Agreement details what responsibility Universal and the County each have in the extension of the road. The Kirkman extension will have 8 lanes, including 2 dedicated bus lanes, and is expected to be the main artery for transportation between the two Universal resort complexes. The proposal is for Universal to manage construction of the road, subject to certain county limitations and oversight, and for the county to maintain it thereafter. Orange County is planning to contribute $125 million of the projected $315 million cost, with Universal covering most of the remainder and being responsible for any cost overruns.

The Land Use Plan Amendment is a key document in determining what Universal can build, as it proposes rules on topics like building density and maximum height. Additionally, Universal is requesting many waivers from the normal Orange County code, which would allow things such as launching fireworks or using atypical perimeter landscaping.

The Kirkman Road Agreement, in particular, has generated significant controversy. Many local residents oppose spending so much local money for the benefit of one large corporation, and are unexcited about the additional traffic that the development will bring to the area. If you have time to do some reading, the Orlando Sentinel has done good reporting on the organized opposition to the agreement, as well as Universal's campaign to push it through. They have also uncovered some more questionable actions taken by Universal, arguing county commissioners were misled about the Major Economic Development Projects initiative after not being informed that Universal designed the program themselves and that Universal threatened county staff with having the EU property annexed into Orlando (and therefore out of Orange County's tax jurisdiction) in order to get exactly the proposal they wanted.

In light of this controversy, there were a lot of questions at today's housing announcement about whether the land donation was really just a way to win votes for these crucial EU development milestones. Both Universal and Mayor Demings said that the timing wasn't related to the Universal votes tomorrow, with Mayor Demings instead saying the timing probably has more to do with affordable housing discussions that will be happening at the board meeting tomorrow. It still looks suspicious, however, especially in light of Universal's extensive public campaign and lobbying efforts (also detailed by the Sentinel) and the expectation that the Kirkman vote could be close, although I believe that both Universal measures are expected to pass.
 

WAJAS98

Veteran Member
Aug 15, 2014
3,276
--Classified--
Can someone please explain to me why they are receiving tax incentives? The purpose of tax incentives is to encourage a business to locate within your county or expand faster to increase tax revenue, but this does not seem to be the reason here.

NBCUniversal owns no other land that could sustain a theme park anywhere else in the country. There is only one other market in all of the country that could even support a new theme park, Orlando and LA. LA does not have the land for it, so Orlando it is. Therefore, the tax incentives have no purpose to locate the park.

NBCUniversal has already invested heavily in development for this park. They have shown this development is occurring. Not to mention, an additional park has extremely little risk for them. They have significant capital. If this park were to fail, the company is large enough to sustain it. In summary, this park is happening at this scale one way or the other.

So why are we giving them free money?!! This isn't Lockheed, which can literally locate wherever the aerospace workforce exists in one of a dozen regions. This is the same bull incentives that we give them in the current property. What are they going to do? Relocate the whole complex?! In what world!

Not to mention, this same argument applies to the meddlings Universal has done with the road and the special Major Economic Development Projects program. Orlando and Orange County must stand strong together because the only power Universal has over them is each other.

(That's my rant for the day. Feel free to poke holes in this as I have only read up on it and done research for about 2 hours. There is bound to be contrivances or nonsense within it.)
 
  • Like
Reactions: Evan and Frankyg123

mainejeff

Member
Sep 2, 2012
612
NBCUniversal owns no other land that could sustain a theme park anywhere else in the country. There is only one other market in all of the country that could even support a new theme park, Orlando and LA. LA does not have the land for it, so Orlando it is.
This fallacy has always irked me a bit. There ARE other markets that could sustain theme parks.....the theme park corporations just don't want to deal with those state and local governments, weather or make the type of investments needed to build theme park resorts from scratch.

San Diego/North County
San Antonio/Austin, TX
Virginia/DC
Metro NYC/NJ

Are some places that come to mind.....
 
  • Like
Reactions: My95cobras

AlexanderMBush

Legendary Member
Nov 23, 2013
16,940
Arizona
This fallacy has always irked me a bit. There ARE other markets that could sustain theme parks.....the theme park corporations just don't want to deal with those state and local governments, weather or make the type of investments needed to build theme park resorts from scratch.

San Diego/North County
San Antonio/Austin, TX
Virginia/DC
Metro NYC/NJ

Are some places that come to mind.....
To counter-point, almost all four of those examples that you just mentioned, already have regional parks close to or within those locations.

  • San Diego/NC - SeaWorld San Diego, Legoland Carlsbad
  • San Antonio/Austin (Also in a manner, Dallas) - Six Flags Fiesta Texas, Six Flags Over Texas, SeaWorld San Antonio
  • Virgina/DC - Busch Garden's Williamsburg, King's Dominion, Six Flags America
  • Metro NYC/NJ - American Dream (Nickelodeon Universe) and the upcoming LEGOland New York
Texas would be an interesting middle-ground, if only as it would be in the middle of the country as opposed to keeping it on one of the two coasts that already has a proper Universal park established. But that being said, you are dealing with area's that deal with weather conditions and climates that would mean that it would have to run seasonal, or in limited year-round operations (especially for outdoor attractions). If Universal or Disney ever tries to expand with another proper US park, I doubt it will be in the East.

But that said, that's getting..a bit off topic from EU now, isn't it.
 

mainejeff

Member
Sep 2, 2012
612
But that being said, you are dealing with area's that deal with weather conditions and climates that would mean that it would have to run seasonal, or in limited year-round operations (especially for outdoor attractions).

But that said, that's getting..a bit off topic from EU now, isn't it.
Why yes....it is. One last thing though regarding weather. I present to you Disneyland Paris, Tokyo Disney, Shanghai Disney& Universal Beijing.

Beijing is very similar to NYC/NJ in winter.

Paris, Tokyo and Shanghai all similar to Virginia in winter.

San Diego obviously has the best weather of all of them. San Antonio/Austin is probably #2.

Now back to Epic Universe.
 
  • Like
Reactions: My95cobras

Cup_Of_Coffee

Veteran Member
Aug 7, 2018
3,071
While this all still feels real in a sense, this isn't going to really feel real until I see some, even bare minimum, construction start. Excited for 2020 and this project as a year from now this is likely going to look a lot different.
 

Happytycho

Member
Mar 1, 2017
562
The fun of being at the end of a long and controversial County Commission docket is that their meeting started at 9am this morning and now at 7pm there are still a handful of issues to be considered ahead of Universal's.

EDIT: They just said a peak of 8,000 construction jobs. Also the 2023 date was a unintentional leak. More details later.
 
Last edited: