If you're someone who's long lamented the fact that Beijing doesn't have a Disneyland, then the latest update about Universal Studios Beijing should get your heart racing.
According to a recent article
by the Wall Street Journal
, Universal Parks & Resorts, along with their Chinese partners, are expanding plans for the 300-acre theme park, increasing their original investment of 3.26 billion USD to a staggering 6.5 billion USD.
This budget surpasses Walt Disney Co's investment of 5.5 billion USD into Shanghai Disney, making Universal Studios Beijing the very first time Disney has been reportedly outspent in regards to theme park investment.
Plans to expand Universal Beijing came after Universal witnessed the success of Shanghai Disney, which drew over 11 million visitors in its first year of opening (and exceeded Disney's own best-case projections). Universal now forecasts that the Beijing park will attract 10 million visitors in its first year, up from an initial projection of 7 million.
Last week, it was also reported that Universal Beijing submitted construction tenders to build '12 amusement facilities' at the park, with a Harry Potter
world plus attractions based on the Kung Fu Panda
and Fast & Furious
film franchises already confirmed.
With its doubled investment, Universal Beijing is set to become the largest-ever Universal Studios theme park, bypassing its Orlando flagship. However, with its opening now pushed back to 2021, it seems there's still a good few years before we can hop on a rollercoaster.