June 15, 2014 – As Universal continues to upgrade and improve its infrastructure in preparation for 2015 and 2016 season, we thought we’d take a look at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter (set to debut in 2016), Fast and Furious: Supercharged (2015), Springfield (2015) along with a quick update on Theater Cafe, the “P-3” parking structure, Finlays and more.
It’s a big update, so let’s get started.
With Universal’s five-year transformation plan chugging along, the “P-3” parking structure continues to develop at a rapid pace.
Replacing the E.T. flat lot, “P-3” (as seen on Universal’s official Evolution Plan) aims to supplement the multistory Jurassic Park, Curious George and Frankenstein parking structures already in place around CityWalk. In due time, Universal will eventually begin constructing a parking structure adjacent to the existing Curious George lot (P-13), alongside new structures in front of CityWalk (P-4) and a flat lot across from P-3 (P-9). While those projects are still in their respective preliminary phases, constructions crews continue to prepare the P-3’s eventual footers as the parking structure begins to grow vertical.
Heading to something a bit less ambitious, Theatre Cafe updated its dessert selection with prepackaged ButterFinger cupcakes, sundae cone and other sweet delights.
While not a game changer by any means, Theatre Cafe’s new selection is part of the park’s ongoing project of adding more grab-and-go food items to its food venues – including the recent addition of a grab-and-go cooler in Hollywood Grill.
Springfield – on the other hand – hasn’t changed from our last update. The area will still likely feature a two-story food court alongside an elaborate facade detailing some of Springfield’s biggest landmarks. Surrounding restaurants will also be rethemed and repurposed as Universal aims to create its second themed land (the first being Super Silly Fun Land) Specifically, there’s a very high chance that Louie’s Pizza and the adjacent Ben and Jerry’s will be rethemed to eateries from the Simpsons.
Of course, long time readers will know that the completion of Springfield will be the final step of a comprehensive plan aimed at refurnishing Simpsons Plaza, which began with the addition of Krusty’s Carnival Games earlier this year.
Heading on over to Hogsmeade, the Wizarding World seems to be progressing at a healthy pace – with steel structures already resembling the iconic rooftops from the film franchise.
Though not shown explicitly in the photos below, the outer perimeter of Hogsmeade Village has already erected next to Shrek 4D, Production Central, and Simpsons Plaza. As we’ve also mentioned in the past, impediments to the new land – such as Flintstones BBQ – will be removed in the future date as the park’s old infrastructure continues to be removed in favor of new enhancements. With Universal’s food options stabilizing, the removal of Flintstones will likely occur sooner rather than later.
Of course, one of the most anticipated additions to the Studio Tour will be Fast and Furious: Supercharged, giving guests the opportunity to experience the mega-franchise in person.
As we’ve noted before, Fast and Furious is occupying a rather sizable portion of Falls Lake – occupying much of the path that used to reside by the side. With multiple rooms and practical effects, Fast and Furious will undoubtedly introduce a new type of experience to Hollywood audiences. Oh, and for what it’s worth, some picture cars from Fast and Furious were also spotted on the lot. Anyone know what they’re doing out in the open?
And finally, everyone’s favorite mystery appears to be solved!
After undergoing three paint schemes in the span of just one year, Universal has finally decided to transforms Finlays into a Cinnabon! Gone are the green and yellow – replaced by a nice shade of brown and white. Will the Finlays saga finally come to an end? Here’s hoping…
Oh, and Jurassic Park’s extended queue has once again been closed in preparation for Halloween Horror Nights. Just so you know…
That does it for this month’s update. Please stay with Inside Universal for continuing coverage of these projects and more originating from Universal Studios Hollywood. Thanks for reading, and be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
Jonathan Green is the managing editor of Inside Universal.
Jonathan has been going to Universal for over 25 years, developing a deep passion for the theme park and its historic films. His real passion involves Universal Studios Hollywood’s storied past and how it eventually transformed from a movie studio into a theme park.
You may contact Jonathan at firstname.lastname@example.org