Universal Orlando announces opening date for “epic” new theme park

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Epic Universe at Universal Orlando Resort

Credit: Universal Orlando

Universal Orlando fans, heads up: we now know when Universal Orlando Resort’s new theme park — Epic Universe — will open, and it’s sooner than you may have expected.

On a Comcast earnings call Thursday morning, Universal Orlando Resort officials announced that the Epic Universe theme park will open in 2023. Back in August, Universal announced that it would be building a new theme park just south of the resort’s two theme parks and water park. The newest addition to the resort will be called Epic Universe, and although a lot is being kept under wraps, it seems the opening year isn’t.

Universal's Epic Universe logo
Credit: Universal Orlando

“And we recently announced we’re doing a fourth gate in Orlando in 2023,” one executive said when the topic of the call moved to the company’s theme park division.

Earlier this summer when the new park was announced, Universal officials said in a press release, “Universal’s Epic Universe will take guests on a journey where beloved stories expand into vibrant lands–and where that journey is as much a part of their adventure as the ultimate destination.”

Universal has been describing its Epic Universe park as a “fourth gate,” and although the validity of that terminology has been up for debate in the theme park community, it’s safe to say the new park will be pretty “epic.”

epic universe location
Credit: Universal Orlando

Currently, Universal Orlando Resort encompasses Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure, Volcano Bay, Universal CityWalk, and a handful of resort hotels for guests to stay at while visiting. The latest Epic Universe park will add not only a wide variety of attractions, dining locations, and experiences to the resort, but also over 14,000 new jobs. And the starting pay for employees will be $15 per hour. There’s no word yet on the cost of admission and whether it will vary for this park or remain consistent with the other two main theme parks, but we’ll report back when we know more.

Local Florida news station Spectrum News points out that theme parks draw big business for Comcast, the parent company of NBCUniversal. Universal theme parks generated $1.6 billion in the third quarter of 2019.

Competition looks to be heating up in the Orlando tourism market with the opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World and other attractions that draw visitors to the area. But it doesn’t look like Universal will let this slow it down.

What do you think of Universal’s plans for Epic Universe and the 2023 opening date? Let us know in the comments!

Source: Spectrum News

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