We’re back – this time with a look at construction for Universal’s up-and-coming experience, The Walking Dead Experience, Halloween Horror Nights, work on Universal Hollywood Drive, a new photo opportunity in Universal Plaza and much, much more.
Let’s dive in!
Park Update Index
Work on Universal Hollywood Drive continues in the summer season, though most of the work has been focused on the underground tunnel that will connect 10 Universal City Plaza to the studio directly across the street. Construction appears to be extensive, with no near opening date in sight.
On the guest facing side, crews have finally removed the then-broken up walkway leading to the Universal City Shuttle, forcing guests to now walk around the planter. Moving further up the hill, greenery continues to be added to the former site of the Fung Lum restaurant (the proposed site of a future hotel) and the side of the hill. While the hill is mostly complete, crews continue to work on adding light fixtures that will illuminate the new palm trees that line up the street.
Heading to CityWalk, the entertainment district continues to undergo a small transformation of its own, with multiple restaurants slated to open in the near future.
Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville and Voodoo Doughnut continue to see very little exterior work while crews focus on renovating their interior. Work on the former Jon Lovitz Comedy Club also continues, with construction walls erected in front of the venue’s entrances. Dongpo Kitchen – on the other hand – has seen some steady exterior progress, with crews adding a glass divider that will separate the main pathway from the outdoor dining area.
Finally, the queue for the Universal City Shuttle has seen a few modifications – namely, a yellow line designed to keep guests behind the loading zone.
In a delightful surprise, Universal has installed a series of meet-and-greets and photo opportunities in Universal Plaza.
Featuring Transformers and Scooby-Doo and his friends (including Velma!), these photo opportunities will allow guests to meet with characters at regular intervals throughout the day.
Finally, there appears to be a third possible meet-and-greet location situated in Universal Plaza. We hear that a new film from Focus Features may be appearing soon.
The classic construction photo opportunity in New York Street has also been removed in favor of a new display featuring the characters from The Secret Life of Pets – Universal’s latest animated film set to debut this summer. The film’s stars – including Max, Mel, Duke, Gidget, and Buddy – are situated around a park bench located in Central Park.
With a portion of the existing Baker Street already modified, crews have begun preparing the scene for a new helicopter crash site that will mark the cornerstone of the attraction’s facade. Burn marks have already been added to the new show building, with the new helicopter expected to be installed in the coming days. For now, some annual pass members have been receiving emails exempting blackout dates during the attraction’s initial opening week. You must RSVP to attend, so check your email for information.
Construction for Halloween Horror Nights is underway, with additional maze construction appearing near the Universal Metropolitan sets and behind the Revenge of the Mummy show building. Work in the Jurassic Park queue has also progressesed, with a facade now visibly forming. Are there any guesses for what it could be?
Work on The Secret Life of Pets attraction continues, with crews continuing to tour the area in preparation for construction. The fence blocking theme park access from the studio is still gone, with a faux soundstage construction wall extending across the Transformers extended queue.
Finally, work on Universal’s new soundstages progresses at a brisk pace, with crews continuing to lay the foundation for the new structures.
That does it for this update.
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