Universal Studios Japan has confirmed that it will open a brand new land, Univeral Wonderland, to replace the existing Land of Oz in spring 2012.
The new area will feature attractions based on Sesame Street, Hello Kitty and Peanuts, with Universal Studios Japan promising that it will include a range of family-friendly rides. Construction is already underway, with Land of Oz having closed on February 15, 2011.
Universal Wonderland will be designed to resemble a town where popular children's characters live, and will be made up of three distinct zones. It will cover some 30,000 square meters, a slightly larger area than was previously occupied by Land of Oz. This is because it will absorb the existing Snoopy Studios, which will be closed temporarily from January 2012.
The three areas that will be included in Universal Wonderland are:
- Hello Kitty Fashion Avenue - themed around a fashion boutique opened by Hello Kitty on her return from Hollywood.
- Sesame Friendly Town - features an indoor playzone as well as outdoor attractions, hosted by a range of Sesame Street characters. A new character, Moppy, will be created especially for the park.
- Snoopy Studios - based on a movie studio where Snoopy is the director. A new ride is due to be added to the area alongside the existing Snoopy's Great Race attraction.
Universal Studios Japan is currently celebrating its 10th anniversary, with the park having opened on March 31, 2001. Located in Osaka, the park is billing its celebratory events as the "The Biggest and Greatest Happy Surprises in Park History”.
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