"Harry Potter" Land Gets a Break-Ground Date

Universal will begin construction in late summer 2013.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Getty Images
    Universal Studios Hollywood will break ground on The Wizarding World of Harry Potter starting in late summer 2013. The Universal Orlando attraction is pictured.

    In the Harry Potter universe, sometimes all one needs is a very special wand and an enchantment spell to build a whole new land out of seemingly thin air.

    But here in Muggledom? Plans must be made and budgets drawn and people hired, and that can take months, if not years.

    So while the news that The Wizarding World of Harry Potter would open at Universal Studios Hollywood was made at the end of 2011, formal plans understandably took time in coming.

    We suppose they did not have Quidditch brooms to fly in on, is why.

    Called The Evolution Plan, and released to the public on Wednesday, April 24, the vast overview looks ahead a quarter-century into Universal Studios Hollywood's future. A major part of that immediate future is The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, a multi-prism'd land brimming with rides, shops, and such, making its much-anticipated debut.

    "Late summer" is the window given for the initial breaking ground.

    There are changes in store for Universal Studios, as one would expect from a large themed new area magically appearing inside the hillside theme park. Gibson Amphitheatre will close, as will the Curious George attraction.

    As one would expect, there are many numbers attached to the Evolution Plan. One? The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is expected to create over 2,000 construction jobs. In addition to Harry Potter, new offices and physical infrastructure will be built, and existing buildings upgraded. The plan calls is a $500 million investment in the LA economy.

    Seems like a bit of magic has started years before the Harry Potter land is set to officially debut. And if you think you've heard of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter before, you have; one opened at Universal Orlando in 2010.

    Will there be a rather magnificent Hogwarts castle as the centerpiece of the Universal Studios Hollywood land? Like in Florida?

    In response: Does Hedwig fly?

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