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NBCUniversal Evolution Plan

AlexanderMBush

Legendary Member
Nov 23, 2013
19,685
Arizona
Food for thought, what if they could strike a deal with the owners of the Hilton and Sheraton, making them "affiliated" hotels, similar to what is done for Osaka?
 

AlexanderMBush

Legendary Member
Nov 23, 2013
19,685
Arizona
well what does this imply for ush
As of right now, I would not suspect anything until this reaches the city council, and that I see Universal taking an anti-stance towards it, similar to when they opposed the Orlando Skyplex tower.

This is why theme parks who wait to announce things always lose. First Disneyland's eastern gateway project, now the hotel drama at Universal.
When thinking about it, it is one of those odd instances to where this is going to probably fall flat on Universal. But a part of me hopes that they may try to push forward with that Hub hotel, to block out any sight lines of the Hilton from the Upper Lot side.
 
Jul 30, 2016
247
The way I see is, there are three major areas where we could see movement in 2018:
  • Sound stages 22-25, 28 - Approx. 3.5 acres - Long reported to be the future site of the Secret Life of Pets ride, this area has not seen any movement for several months. Soundstage 28 was cleared out and demolished in 2014, with the other four stages demolished earlier this year. Since then, the area has been paved over and used as studio parking/storage. In this Variety article from June 2016, those soundstages (along with stages 33-37, 41-44, and a rehearsal hall) are all marked for removal over the next few years for "for future theme park expansion." The 22-25 area already has a project number, P168, but the former site of 28 still has a building code "3271". The nearby stages 29 and 31 are also listed as being on the chopping block (31 is already gone, but 29 still stands), although that project is listed as "ongoing". It is unclear what is preventing the removal of 29, but when the new soundstages by park lake open in early 2018, we are likely to see 29 go shortly after.
  • Fung Lum Restaurant - Approx. 0.75 acres - Demolished in 2014, this has been marked as part of the Evolution Plan as the potential site of a new hotel. This would be the first hotel actually on Universal property. While, to me at least, this seems like an ambitious goal to fit a hotel in less than an acre, the main part of the Sheraton and Hilton hotels comprise less than half an acre each, so it's not totally out of the question. The land technically lies inside the City of Los Angeles, as opposed to Universal City, and there may be some red tape that's preventing development. For the time being, it is a parking lot.
  • South-east of E.T. Parking - Approx. 3.5 acres - It was a set of baseball diamonds until a few years ago, when it was paved to allow guests to move more freely around the construction site for the ET parking structure. I never noticed this area until the recent IU article about revisiting the Evolution plan. That area is highlighted as "Entertainment," referring to Theme Park use. It could be a new hotel, but it also could be another parking structure as there appears to be a bridge of some kind connecting it to the ET structure and the existing open air parking lots are marked for replacement by buildings as well. Not to get too far into the realm of the hypothetical, but if they unified their parking and moved it to the far end of Citywalk, they could then move their security checkpoint to that area as well, freeing up more space near the entrance of the park and allowing more space for a potential hotel. This is the layout that Orlando uses, with their parking structures linked together linearly and the security checkpoint being between parking and Citywalk. For now, it is walled off and used as storage and parking.
Those are, I think, the biggest potentials for new construction in the new year.
 

AlexanderMBush

Legendary Member
Nov 23, 2013
19,685
Arizona
The way I see is, there are three major areas where we could see movement in 2018:
  • Sound stages 22-25, 28 - Approx. 3.5 acres - Long reported to be the future site of the Secret Life of Pets ride, this area has not seen any movement for several months. Soundstage 28 was cleared out and demolished in 2014, with the other four stages demolished earlier this year. Since then, the area has been paved over and used as studio parking/storage. In this Variety article from June 2016, those soundstages (along with stages 33-37, 41-44, and a rehearsal hall) are all marked for removal over the next few years for "for future theme park expansion." The 22-25 area already has a project number, P168, but the former site of 28 still has a building code "3271". The nearby stages 29 and 31 are also listed as being on the chopping block (31 is already gone, but 29 still stands), although that project is listed as "ongoing". It is unclear what is preventing the removal of 29, but when the new soundstages by park lake open in early 2018, we are likely to see 29 go shortly after.
  • Fung Lum Restaurant - Approx. 0.75 acres - Demolished in 2014, this has been marked as part of the Evolution Plan as the potential site of a new hotel. This would be the first hotel actually on Universal property. While, to me at least, this seems like an ambitious goal to fit a hotel in less than an acre, the main part of the Sheraton and Hilton hotels comprise less than half an acre each, so it's not totally out of the question. The land technically lies inside the City of Los Angeles, as opposed to Universal City, and there may be some red tape that's preventing development. For the time being, it is a parking lot.
  • South-east of E.T. Parking - Approx. 3.5 acres - It was a set of baseball diamonds until a few years ago, when it was paved to allow guests to move more freely around the construction site for the ET parking structure. I never noticed this area until the recent IU article about revisiting the Evolution plan. That area is highlighted as "Entertainment," referring to Theme Park use. It could be a new hotel, but it also could be another parking structure as there appears to be a bridge of some kind connecting it to the ET structure and the existing open air parking lots are marked for replacement by buildings as well. Not to get too far into the realm of the hypothetical, but if they unified their parking and moved it to the far end of Citywalk, they could then move their security checkpoint to that area as well, freeing up more space near the entrance of the park and allowing more space for a potential hotel. This is the layout that Orlando uses, with their parking structures linked together linearly and the security checkpoint being between parking and Citywalk. For now, it is walled off and used as storage and parking.
Those are, I think, the biggest potentials for new construction in the new year.
To add, by early 2018, the first batch of the 12 soundstages on Park Lake (the area where the Kong miniatures were), and presuming that they aim to get more of the Park Lake soundstages done by Late 2018, we could see the cluster of soundstages by Transformers and Mummy take their leave by late 2018/early 2019.

That said, What I think may be most likely, is the beginning of working on the stuff on Soundstages 22-25 and SS28 (possibly SLoP and/or an additional attraction).
 

AlexanderMBush

Legendary Member
Nov 23, 2013
19,685
Arizona
So, to bring up an update:

The first Four Soundstages are complete near Red Sea, however, in an interesting thing to notice via by the most recent Shaun Allen vlog of USH, it seems like Red Sea may be staying in some form for now.

upload_2018-5-20_16-34-40.png

They have also made the advancement to lay down new asphalt next to Stage 747, and have landscaped the lake around the Soundstages, even if one side is having an excessive amount of dirt.

Thinking over this, it seems like they may be reserving to complete the 12 soundstages, and will be doing them more slowly, due to that the Los Angeles Olympics has been pushed back to the 2028 spot (unlike the originally proposed 2024 position). And with that, especially if they start work on Nintendo before Mummy closes (shuttering the Soundstage/Rehearsal cluster), that means they will be losing quite a few indoor productions for the time being, until all 12 are completed.

Just some food for thought.
 
Jul 30, 2016
247
And with that, especially if they start work on Nintendo before Mummy closes (shuttering the Soundstage/Rehearsal cluster), that means they will be losing quite a few indoor productions for the time being, until all 12 are completed.
Sound stages 33-37 & 41-44 comprise more than 25% of the entire sound stage space of the Universal Studios lot, not including the adjacent rehearsal hall. It seems unlikely that they would relinquish that much shooting space without an immediate replacement. I think they may prioritize whatever is planned for the site of former stages 24-28 and close/demolish 33-37, 41-44 when more of the new stages have been completed.
 

AlexanderMBush

Legendary Member
Nov 23, 2013
19,685
Arizona
So they're putting more stages on the lot?
They announced back in 2016 that they would be adding 10 soundstages into the Backlot, where the former Red Sea is. And that, with how LA is now approved for the 2028 Summer Olympics, there should be two additional soundstages added into the Red Sea Soundstages.

They also added new soundstages next to the Metro Set's, and that they have plans on removing multiple soundstages, with some already gone (The Former 22-25 Soundstages).