Sunday, April 15, 2018

New Islands of Adventure Potter-Themed Coaster Now Vertical

While I'm still a bit sad about the removal of Dueling Dragons Dragon Challenge at Islands of Adventure, located within the Universal Orlando Resort, the addition of a shrouded-in-mystery Harry Potter themed roller coaster does ease the pain a tad.

Universal hasn't said much about the roller coaster, in fact so far just really that it will open in 2019, be family friendly, and will transport us into the world of Harry Potter.  Since then Dragon Challenge has been totally removed and work on the new coaster is well underway.

In fact, if you have already followed user Bioreconstruct on Twitter, then you'd have seen some great aerials of the ride going vertical.

Here is a view of the expansive site that Dragon Challenge occupied.  From construction photos it is pretty obviously that the new coaster will utilize the former station for the pair of B&M rides.  It looks like about half of the new coaster's footings are in place, with crews working on the area closer to the station and moving outward.  You can also spot at least one show building being constructed at the bottom of the photo - the ride is rumored to include several smaller show buildings throughout the course.
You probably noticed it in the first photo, but the crews have also started to lift supports for the ride, pained brown, into place.  This photo is extra-interesting because the tallest supports that have been set appear to be a reverse spike, with trains moving up it until they lose speed and head backward down... and since the coaster is expected to be a complete circuit that means a switch track should be involved too.

Aside from the track spike, you can also trace the outline of some curves that will snake their way around the spike - the supports indicate some pretty good banking on these track pieces.  The ride is also expected to use launches to generate speed, versus a traditional lift hill, which should be fun.  I can't wait to see more of the ride go up, especially track!