A new report claims that the rumored Harry Potter expansion at Universal Studios Florida will be anchored by a major new roller coaster set in Gringotts Bank.
The report, posted by Theme Park Insider, is consistent with previous rumors about the planned expansion. Featuring concept art from initial plans that were dated November 2011, it details an area based around London as seen in the Harry Potter movies, with the Gringotts Bank coaster sitting at its heart.
If true, the report is likely to delight Harry Potter fans, who recently voted a ride based around the bank as their number one choice for the next Potter-themed attraction. As widely expected, the London area is expected to take over the site of the Jaws ride, which will close on January 2, 2012.
Theme Park Insider's Robert Niles, who previously questioned the rumors of a Harry Potter land at Universal Studios Florida, describes in detail the plans for the Gringotts Bank ride. The Potter land would sit between the existing, seldom-used Fear Factor Live theater and the Disaster! attraction, replacing the entire Amity area. Much of this space would be taken up by the coaster, which would feature an elaborate queue and twin cars capable of holding up to 12 people in three rows of four.
A number of recognisable scenes from the Harry Potter movies would be included in the ride, with some being recreated using 3D projection technology. Full details of these can be found in the Theme Park Insider article.
Universal has confirmed plans to add additional Harry Potter attractions at Universal Orlando, which already hosts the existing Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Islands of Adventure. Despite the large distance (and a number of obstructions) between the location of Amity in Universal Studios Florida and the site of the existing Wizarding World, there are strong rumors that a version of the Hogwarts Express train could be built to link the two.
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