Epic Universe, Universal Orlando’s newest theme park is currently under construction, had been scheduled to debut in 2025. As reported by the Orlando Sentinel, NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell announced today that the newest Park expansion is on target to open by summer 2025:
“I don’t think we’ve said the exact date that we’re opening in, but we will have an impact in ‘25. It will open in time for the summer of ‘25.”
Shell dug deeper into this expansion project during today’s UBS Global TMT Conference, calling the timeline “excellent timing” and highlighting current consumer demands, such as Orlando International Airport’s opening of Terminal C in September, as well as hotel booking trends.
According to Shell, Epic Universe is being constructed so that visitors from the Orange County Convention Center can “access one land rather than the entire park.” Epic Universe is located northeast of the Orange County Convention Center, and other pieces of land owned by Universal that are associated to the theme park are directly across Universal Boulevard.
This park was intended to open next year (2023), however it was postponed because of COVID-19. If all goes as planned, it will open in the summer of 2025. Some analysts speculated that supply chain concerns may influence some construction materials, but Shell stated today that no such issues have happened, albeit material costs have changed. Shell also stated that the project’s budget is on track:
“We’re right on track as far as spending. We were worried earlier on because of raw materials costs and steel and things like that. We’re largely past that now … All the infrastructure’s in, a lot of the steel is in, and now it’s just a question of building out. Our peak spend will be in ‘23.”
You might be asking which lands are coming to Epic Universe at this time. Unfortunately, Universal has only confirmed one land – Super Nintendo World. Shell stated that this region at Universal Studios Japan has drawn more visitors, which could be a strong predictor of how it will do in Orlando.
This Nintendo-themed land will also be debuting at Universal Studios Hollywood in 2023, and both this and the Universal Studios Japan incarnations are expected to include some of the same material as Epic Universe.
Additionally, Park attendance is high right now at Universal’s U.S. locations, but Shell doesn’t believe it will slow down any time soon:
“Domestic [theme park performance] continues to be strong, both in terms of our daily attendance, also in terms of our forward booking and hotel occupancy.”
What do you think about this Park opening news? Are you excited for Epic Universe’s opening in 2025? Tell us your thoughts in the comments!