Construction Begins on Hogwarts Castle for Wizarding World of Harry Potter Theme Park
Feb 11, 2008
Construction has begun on building Hogwarts Castle for the Wizarding World of Harry Potter Theme Park at Universal Orlando, Florida. Longtime theme park blogger Jim Hill reports today that work is underway on the castle that will serve as the centerpiece of the Harry Potter attraction, and has photos of the steel beams that are forming the base of the castle. He writes “According to Universal insiders, this bare framework is just the start. In the weeks and months ahead, literally thousands of pieces of metal will be hoisted up & then bolted into place. As a full-sized recreation of Harry Potter’s alma mater is built at the southwestern border of IOA‘s “Jurassic Park” section.”
Also, Mr. Hill gives some reported background on how Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling was persuaded to go with Universal for the theme park, as well as one amusing story involving Harry Potter film production designer Stuart Craig, who is overseeing things for the Harry Potter theme park as well.
“Mind you, that’s not to say that there weren’t a few bumps in the road before Rowling finally agreed to sign that contract. Like that time that Universal Security had to be told NOT to arrest the man who was climbing the hill behind IOA‘s “Flying Unicorn” ride. You see, that man was Stuart Craig. The three-time Academy Award winner who has designed all of the sets for the “Harry Potter” films. And Stuart was just climbing that hill to see if he could find the proper spot to build Hagrid’s cottage.
Speaking of which … “The Flying Unicorn” is expected to shut down sometime in September of this year. So that this IOA attraction can then be transformed into “The Flying Hippogriff.” More to the point, so that work can finally begin on Hagrid’s cottage.”
At last word, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter was set to open in December 1 of 2009, but that remains still in a state of flux, given the early stages of construction for the theme park.