Universal Studios Orlando is a resort that continually surprises us with the increased amount of effort they are putting towards guest experience.  Not one’s to sit on their laurels, they are continually adding to the park.  Recently, they added some large props to the area known as Battery Park.  These props are not from the latest Michael Bay blockbuster.  Rather, they are from an older film trilogy.  While making these little improvements they have also been hard at work on bigger improvements and some massive new attractions as well.  Here’s the latest from the Universal Studios Orlando Resort this week.

The small project in the tranquil setting of Battery Park went mostly unnoticed by the average guest.  Large cement foundations were constructed to showcase a few relics from the Back to the Future film trilogy from the 80’s.  What with all of the other things happening at the park, why did they bother?  Simply to enhance the overall guest experience. Even though there are two major construction projects happening in the park, a brand new parade and night time spectacular, and Halloween Horror Nights just around the corner, they still found time to improve a small corner of the park.

The time travel train from Back to the future 3 now sits on display

In addition, they are showcasing a Delorean.

The Back To The Future ride is long gone (replaced by those crazy Simpson’s), but its nice to see it represented in the park again.

Transformers: The Ride 3D attraction is in the middle of having its foundation constructed.

It is a HUGE construction site.

Note the construction worker in the orange vest to get a good idea of scale.

An even larger project is the Harry Potter expansion being built in Universal Studios Orlando as a companion piece to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in the adjacent, Islands of Adventure.

The waterfront retaining wall is nearly complete. They will soon be able to let the water return to the banks.

Meanwhile, Universal has closed Fear Factor Live.  This is to make way for the Bill and Ted show, which will run nightly during Halloween Horror Nights.

Finally, the Midway Games have seen minor progress in front of The Simpson’s The Ride.


Lastly, over in Islands of Adventure, work continues on the shops in The Lost Continent.  Nothing major, just upkeep.

Universal is obviously aware of the importance of guest experience and are doing what they can to improve the overall condition of the parks while the major projects are under construction.  Let’s hope this doesn’t end anytime soon as there are many long months of construction ahead.

  • mratigan

    Great job UOR glad to see my 2nd favorite movie there

    • KingEric

      I love seeing the movie props back, and in a much lovelier setting than where they were.

  • PeaJay18

    I love visiting both UOR parks and look forward to these updates.
    They have so much going on and it’s good to see they aren’t resting on their post-Potter laurels.

    Haven’t the BTTF train and Delorean always been in the park, located over by the NY section?
    I’m glad they’re still around.

    • KingEric

      Correct, back when there was the BTTF ride, they were over there, but kind of just sitting there.

      Then they were moved over by SS 44, and when it was demolished, they were moved back stage. However their location over by SS 44 was kind of just an after thought. No real care in the staging of it.

      This new location shows great care, and appreciation for these props, also both props received full refurbs so they are in better show condition.

  • ryno1986

    It’s nice to give credit where credit is due, but the Back to the Future props are just relocated because of Transformers construction. Honestly, your relentless praise of the Universal Orlando Resort is bizarre.

    • Credit where credit is due my friend. Disney World is in a state of serious decline while SeaWorld and Universal are stepping it up dramatically. Families need to know that a trip to Orlando isn’t all about Disney any more. And shouldn’t be. The two best attractions in the country are at Islands of Adventure (Harry Potter and Spiderman).

      Some of the Disney die-hards (and the Disney PR/Social Media folks paid to leave comments here) may not want to hear the truth, but Disney needs to step it up and know that the competition is eating their lunch! It makes for a better guest experience for all of the parks to be in high competition for your hard earned dollars.

      • jcruise86

        I haven’t been to WDW in about 11 years. Before that I had been there at least 16 times, with each visit taking place in a different years. I’m reluctant to cross the country from California to Florida to ride Soarin’ Over California, and spend thousands to see a broken Yeti. We’ll get there, but it will likely be a once-in-a-childhood experience for my kid rather than an annual event it could be if it were up to the standards of WDW in the 1970s or Tokyo Disneyland.

        We were going to visit WDW and Universal Orlando, but then Universal announced they were building a Harry Potter land out her in California, so I thought we’d just stick with WDW. Now that Universal Orlando is quickly adding to their Harry Potter world, we might go there.

      • KingEric

        I will praise Universal for everything they do right to encourage them to continue to do right!

        Right now a big thing that I have talked about are all the changes that are happening on the Mummy ride.

        I simply cannot get photos of what is being improved. They have replaced the projectors in the Scarabes room, and on the launch hill.

        Those are now the 4k projectors that they have used for Despicable ME:MM and the newly refurbished Spiderman.

        Universal hasn’t announced or commented on the Mummy upgrades, but they are there, they are looking nice, and I am hearing stories about a major Spiderman esq refurb of the attraction where the ending will be changed, but again I can’t get photos of these changes because where they are located, but Universal is making massive changes. And they deserve to be praised for it!

    • mainejeff

      The same can be said about the relentless praise of Disney on here as well though……….

      • Wreckless Abrandon

        Agreed. And this is coming from a huge Disney fan. I’m very impressed with Universal on the East Coast!

      • KingEric

        I try to praise Disney when they do something I really like. I also praise SeaWorld, and other attractions here.

        But Universal is just doing a lot of things right, right now.

    • TwilitWings

      I always thought the Universal Studios parks in Orlando are vastly more enjoyable than Disney World (and this was before Harry Potter!), however, I agree with you that this might not be something so important to show “where credit is due” if it’s simply moved due to construction.

      • KingEric

        but it wasn’t simply moved. They improved the display, the location, and you have a better experience with these props now.

  • villagecreator

    Great article! Too bad you can’t get to it through Miceage. I ended up re-reading half an article from July before I realized I had already seen it.

    • Thank you for letting us know. MiceAge is maintained by Al Lutz. We have notified him and he will hopefully update soon. Please note that you can navigate to all of our content directly from http://MiceChat.com on a daily basis as well.

  • ralzap

    Take the Power. It worked at Disneyland. Make WDW the next! You see at KBF, go Mice age team. You do make a difference.

  • Asylim

    I love seeing these updates. Thank you everyone.

    It costs us a small fortune to go to DLR and we live 2.5 hours away by plane. But we love it down there so much that we bought into the DVC.

    We are huge Disney fans but also enjoy Universal in Hollywood and the attractions down in San Diego.

    However, life has thrown us a number of curve balls at us lately (like the discovery a couple of weeks ago that we have our third child due in the new year a full year ahead of our schedule) and we will be having to not go to DLR annually going forward.

    Chances are our next Disney related trip will be to WDW in five or six years (though we might get a couple of days in DLP in 2014 thanks to my mother-in-law). But when I read about the state of decline I get worried that we will be disappointed. So I am always please and excited when I read about all of the improvements being made at Universal in Orlando. A friend of mine came back from their last month and raved about it.

  • gpiltz

    So glad to see “the future” lives on! The parks in Hollywood and Orlando should be ever changing, but my heart will always be back in the late 80’s early 90’s era of both Universal parks.

    By the way, anyone notice the “boy wizard” in photo 15 above, showing London waterfront construction. I have a feeling we’ll be seeing much more of his and his world in this spot soon.


    • KingEric

      While the Universal from the 90’s is gone… and will never return … RIP JAWS, Kong, Nick Studios, Earthquake, Hitchcock, Murder She Wrote, Psycho House, Swamp Thing, Boneyard, Ghost Busters, Back to the Future, Hannah Barbara, Western Show, etc etc…

      The one thing I love about about Universal is that they are constantly evolving the guest experience. There is this sense of newness, that I have fallen in love with.

      While I loved JAWS more than any other attraction, and am heartbroken it is gone, I can’t help but be incredibly excited for what is coming!

  • renderman7

    i just hope the transformers ride is not themed like the one in hollywood. i mean it would ruin the nice feel that part of the park has.

    i hope they theme the outside like the last movie 😀

    • KingEric

      Here is what I think:

      I think the entrance will either be
      1. On the lagoon side
      2. Through Monsters Cafe

      But regardless of that, I would expect the SE side of the building (Shrek facing) to be simply a Sound Stage Looking Building
      I Expect the NW side to have a NY facade
      If the entrance is on the NE side by the Lagoon I expect there to be a big entrance hopefully Nest Themed, but… if the entrance is through Monster’s Cafe, and that whole building becomes the Queue, I would expect a Nest Facade re-theme, and most of the building looking like a Sound Stage with only the NW side having a NY facade.

      Just my 2 cents right now, pure speculation.