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A look back at the new roller coaster species from Universal

By on June 9, 2021 0

ORLANDO, Florida – Universal Orlando Resort is gearing up for the big day when its newest attraction, the Jurassic World Velocicoaster, opens to the public.

While technical rehearsals have been underway since early May, the new roller coaster is slated to officially open on June 10. When the attraction officially opens, thrill seekers will have the opportunity to soar 155 feet in the air and catapult up to 70 mph alongside a ferocious pack of velociraptors.

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The attraction located at Islands of Adventure theme park will be Florida’s fastest and highest launch roller coaster.

For Universal fans, getting to the attraction’s grand opening day took a million years.

Research and development of the coaster took four years, but the overall construction took a little over two years.

“This coaster was just a scribble on a piece of paper,” said Shelby Honea, program producer for Universal Creative. “We wanted to make sure it was a thrill ride roller coaster, we wanted to make sure we were protecting the environment – the lush growth that we have here at Universal’s Islands of Adventure, and of course you have to have some bite in it. a Jurassic World attraction, which is a challenge on a 70 mile-per-hour roller coaster.

Universal Orlando first filed permits for the new attraction with the City of Orlando in May 2018. At the time, it was called Project 791. The review of these plans by various city departments was approved.

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On January 17, 2019, crews begin clearing space near the long-closed Triceratops Encounter attraction adjacent to the Isles of Adventure waterfront.

Universal fans have started speculating what might be on the horizon for the region.

Fueling further speculation, Universal’s social team took to Twitter with an image of a baby dinosaur hatching with the caption: “A star is born.”

The post may have hinted at the upcoming attraction or success of Warner Bro’s 2018 film, “A Star is Born,” which had just received a buzz at the Oscars.

The building walls were erected with a Jurassic World logo and soon after, the merchandise kiosks were relocated.

Construction of walls at Jurassic Park in January 2019 (McReynolds)

Members of the Universal team were alerted the same month via internal communications that a pedestrian bridge connecting “Jurassic Park” and the Lost Mainland would close on January 22, 2019.

Construction in front of the Jurassic Park Discovery Center. February 23, 2019 (McReynolds)

For several months, clearing began around the Jurassic Park Discovery Center at Islands of Adventure. Universal not only had to remove the old Triceratops attraction, but the old Velociraptor Encounter as well.

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At the end of 2019, the cranes arrived on the site at the end of the clearing work.

Construction on Velocicoaster seen on November 3, 2019. (McReynolds)

Construction crews did extensive prep work on the roller coaster during the holiday season and through early 2020, but that all changed when Universal Orlando made the decision to close its theme parks in March 2020 due to of the coronavirus pandemic.

On March 15, 2020, Universal closed its doors to guests in an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, but the closure has not stopped construction of the new attraction.

In May 2020, WKMG’s Sky 6 helicopter flew over the site to see crews making significant progress with the track layout, station and several support beams for the attraction. The 155-foot “top hat” unit was also in its early stages of construction.

Jurassic Coaster at Universal

After months of closure, Universal Orlando received the green light from Orange County officials to reopen under new health and safety protocols on June 5, 2020.

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When guests arrived, they could see the progress being made on the new attraction during the closure.

Construction of roller coasters. June 13, 2020 (McReynolds)

When guests stepped inside, they were able to spot construction crews building some of the awe-inspiring immersions offered by the roller coaster.

Construction of roller coasters. June 13, 2020 (McReynolds)

As the theme park continued to operate with limited capacity and new COVID-19 security protocols, progress on the roller coaster continued.

In August, construction crews took a major milestone with the completion of the coaster’s 155-foot “top hat” element. During the month, guests were stopped dead as giant statues of velociraptors were lifted, and sometimes rolled away, at the construction site.

Sky 6 flies over new roller coasters at Universal
Sky 6 flies over new roller coasters at Universal

Late one day in September, fans got the news they had been waiting for. The name, Jurassic World: Velocicoaster, has been announced. During the same period, officials showed off the first promotional artwork, details of the roller coaster, and even shared a picture of it at night at Islands of Adventure.

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Before the name was revealed, Universal had only said the new ride would open in the summer of 2021.

Universal announces the opening of “Jurassic World VelociCoaster” in the summer of 2021 (WKMG-TV)

The details arrived with the track for the new attraction close or near completion.

In September, the ride vehicles, which were wrapped in plastic, began to undergo testing on the completed roller coaster track.

Drive test vehicles on the completed track. September 20, 2020 (McReynolds)

In October, a video began to surface showing the ride to its full potential as officials began the first test.

Some fans waited a long way to see the coaster accelerate above its highest point in the early hours of the morning.

Construction on Jurassic World: Velocicoaster on October 22, 2020 (McReynolds)

In December 2020, the momentum surrounding the roller coaster was starting to take shape as Universal gave fans a first look at racing vehicles. The coaster’s vehicles are edged in an elegant light blue and black color. The photos also showed a stripe on the front of the coaster and an Ingen and Jurassic Park logo on the sides.

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By early 2021, construction was complete and final details were added ahead of the summer season.

News 6 flew over the attraction to see the latest work in progress.

A video shows the construction progress of a new coaster at Islands of Adventure
A video shows the construction progress of a new coaster at Islands of Adventure
  • January: Guests begin to notice construction crews installing additional statues of prehistoric predators. A pair of Velociraptors could be seen above the entrance to the attraction, while the other set can be found atop the pedestals near the bridge that connects Jurassic Park to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
Velocicoaster testing on March 6, 2021 (McReynolds)
  • March: Opening of a new renovated bypass bridge connecting Jurassic Park to the Lost Continent. He gave the guests a glimpse of the roller coaster. Guests also had the first chance to see the beautiful Velociraptor statues which sit on pedestals
  • May: Universal began premieres for its pass holders on May 2. For several days, at certain times, annual pass holders were allowed to be among the first to enjoy the attraction before it officially opened. Just days after the premieres, Universal began technical rehearsals for the attraction for everyday guests.
Jurassic World: Velocicoaster May 3, 2021 (McReynolds)

On Thursday, June 10, thrill seekers will have the opportunity to soar 155 feet in the air and catapult up to 70 mph alongside a ferocious pack of Velociraptors as Universal Orlando Resort opens Jurassic World VelociCoaster – Florida’s fastest and tallest launch coaster, located at Islands of Adventure Theme Park.

Click here more information about Jurassic World VelociCoaster and to learn more about Universal Orlando Resort.

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