Universal starts more work at rumored Epic Universe monsters land
Universal Orlando Resort’s construction at its future Epic Universe theme park appears to be focusing on the entrance to one of its themed lands.
A new Orange County building permit issued for Universal described new construction for “P902/1500H,” which, for many fans closely following the project, hints at the rumored Project 902 Classic Monsters themed area.
A further analysis of posted site plans on theme park news sites such as Orlando ParkStop allude that the “1500H” part of the permit may hint to the entrance area of the new themed land.
The Tampa office of Baltimore-based Whiting-Turner Contracting Co. is listed as the contractor on the project.
Executives with Universal declined to comment, and representatives with Whiting-Turner were unavailable for comment.
The permit, which shows the value of the work is $5.8 million, expires on Feb. 15, 2023. That timeline may allude to when more work around that themed land may be well underway.
Executives of Philadelphia-based cable giant Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA), parent company of Universal, previously said the new theme park will open in 2025. It’s likely work around each of the themed lands will be underway simultaneously over the next few years.
Work in and around the theme park has been surging toward its opening.
Most recently, Universal filed for a street name petition with Orange County to rename the 1.06-mile roadway expected to lead to Epic Universe’s main entrance area and connect to the Kirkman Road extension project that is underway. The roadway’s name is expected to be changed from “Epic Parkway” to “Epic Boulevard,” said county documents.
In addition, permits show that work on two hotels already has begun.
Information from Real Capital Analytics, a real-time database of commercial real estate transactions, shows the project dubbed “Universal’s Epic Universe Hotel One” is scheduled to be completed more than a year before the new theme park opens. Also, another permit hints at new work for a secondary hotel, rumored to have 750 rooms, that will welcome Epic Universe guests.
The number of building permits pulled by Universal for the Epic Universe site was up by more than 700% to 283 this year between Jan. 1-Aug. 3, compared to just 35 for the same period in 2021, according to Orange County records.
Meanwhile, the activity at Epic Universe is a game changer for the area, said experts.
“A rising tide lifts all boats. The more that is built at Epic Universe, the more exciting a resort destination we become,” said Maria Triscari, president/CEO of the International Drive Resort Area Chamber of Commerce. “When the bar is raised and new and exciting attractions and hotels are built, it benefits everyone. More visitors will come, stay at our hotels, eat at our restaurants and enjoy all the other family friendly attractions that are in the I-Drive corridor,” she previously told OBJ.
Universal Orlando Resort typically draws a combined 20 million-plus tourists through its Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida theme park gates and its Volcano Bay water park in Orlando each year.
Universal also owns the CityWalk dining/shopping/entertainment complex, several area hotels and more than 700 acres for development off of Universal Boulevard, where it is building its future Epic Universe theme park.
Article on Orlando Business Journal