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Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Universal Orlando closing JAWS; Harry Potter expansion
It was announced that the attraction JAWS, built in 1990 for the opening of Universal Orlando, will be closing January 2, 2012. The ride has had some technical difficulties over the years due to the use of water obviously for the mechanical sharks. With everything being underwater, it takes a lot of work to maintain all the equipment, so cost may be a factor as well. It's probably sad to see an original ride go, however ET is still around and should be for a long time.
The good news is that they may be replacing this with the expansion of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. The area has been a huge success, and Universal confirmed the expansion plans. Since it's located in Islands of Adventure and the JAWS spot is in Universal Studios, one rumor is they may connect the two parks with a Hogwarts Express train ride. Obviously this means you might need a ticket for both parks, which may be how you get on the train. Everyone goes to both anyway.
Genius idea in my book. As of now it seems like this new area will be London with King's Cross & Platform 9 3/4 as well as Diagon Alley. Another rumor is that the big new state of the art ride will be an indoor coaster that takes place inside Gringott's bank. In Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows Part 2 we saw quite the wild ride inside Gringott's...so maybe that is where the inspiration comes from? There may also be yet another ride. We'll have to wait and see.