The Universal Orlando Resort has confirmed that an expanded area dedicated to The Simpsons will open at Universal Studios Florida in summer 2013.
It has long been rumored that the area surrounding the existing The Simpsons Ride would be expanded into a recreation of Springfield, the Simpsons' hometown. Universal has confirmed that this is exactly what will happen, with a number of well-known locations set to be included. Construction work on the project has been ongoing for some time, and is now nearing completion.
The area will hug the shoreline of Universal Studios Florida's lagoon, on the opposite side to the under-construction Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Diagon Alley. One of the biggest new additions to the area will be a new flat ride, dubbed Kang & Kodos' Twirl 'n' Hurl. The ride will feature the aliens made famous by the Treehouse of Horror episodes of The Simpsons, and will see guests spinning rapidly.
Several new dining outlets will form part of Springfield. This will include recreations of Krusty Burger, Moe's Tavern, Luigi's Pizza, Lard Lad donuts and the Frying Dutchman. Cletus' house will also be present, serving up chicken and known as Cletus' Chicken Shack, while the Bumblebee Man will be represented by "Taco Freshos". Universal will seek to recreate its success with Butterbeer at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter by serving up "authentic" Duff Beer at Moe's Tavern and a small-scale recreation of the Duff brewery.
The Simpsons-themed merchandise will be available from a new retail outlet based on The Android's Dungeon, the comic book store frequently seen in the animated series. Guests will also be able to meet-and-greet the Simpsons, along with Krusty the Clown and Sideshow Bob.
The Simpsons Ride opened at Universal Studios Florida in 2008, replacing the former Back to the Future - The Ride and reusing its simulator-style ride system. Spoofing several Orlando attractions, it takes guests on a fly-by-night tour of the Krustyland amusement park, pursued by Sideshow Bob.