Universal Studios’ Wizarding World of Harry Potter expansion is in full swing.
According to photos obtained by Attractions Magazine, the Orlando, Fla., theme park is currently installing a highly anticipated new attraction for its Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley expansion. “Coaster car being loaded into Gringotts Bank,” the publication wrote on Twitter Friday next to a picture of a roller-coaster car being lifted into the attraction, which is still under construction.
The photos mark the second time images of the theme park's expansion have been published in recent weeks. WESH Orlando last week obtained images of the site, which will eventually become a real-life version of the fictional village of Diagon Alley. According to Harry Potter fansite SnitchSeeker.com, the aerial images, captured Oct. 1, give a clear view of the park's Hogwarts Express train station, which will connect the new land to Universal Studios' first Harry Potter location, opened in 2010. WESH’s other images also reportedly show the entrance to the Gringotts Bank ride, housed in a rectangular building that is rumored to be based on the series' bar The Leaky Cauldron, and the exterior of the home of Harry Potter’s godfather, Sirius Black, Number 12 Grimmauld Place.
Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros. first announced the Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley expansion in May. “We are thrilled to offer the legions of fans the opportunity to embark on this new journey and experience Diagon Alley as it was brought to life in the books and films,” said Brad Globe, president of Warner Bros. Consumer Products. “Our vision is to create two amazing theme park experiences that combine into one, complete, magical journey,” added Alice Norsworthy, executive vp of marketing and sales for Universal Orlando Resort.
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A spokesperson for the theme park confirmed that the expansion will include a ride based inside Gringotts Bank, a goblin-run establishment in the series and films, but did not comment on the nature of the attraction. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley attraction, restaurant and related shops are scheduled to open in 2014.