Universal Orlando Purchases 101 Additional Acres for Future Projects

Universal has just increased its Orlando landholdings by 101.4 acres, adding to the already significant 475 acres it owns off of Universal Boulevard. Orlando Business Journal has stated that sources close to the deal put the total transaction at $27.5 million; Universal recently spent $130 million (in 2015) for the adjacent swath of land north of Universal Boulevard and west of Destination Parkway.

This addition would mean Universal now has property with access to Sand Lake Road, a major roadway in the Orlando area. Universal is also currently working on its International Drive access, with plans for two “temporary overflow” parking lots filed on October 26th.

The company has not made an official statement as to what the new acreage will be used for, which naturally leads to much speculation as Universal Orlando Resort has lofty goals for the future, including the upcoming Super Nintendo World expansion.

Although he would not confirm the transaction had taken place, CBRE Group Inc.’s Robert McEwan, one of those marketing the property, said of the land,

It’s the last large remaining site for industrial distribution in that area, plus it’s in the tourist area. So it is a unique dual-purpose, dual-demand type of property in that area.

Given that the total amount of property Universal has now purchased in the area exceeds the total area currently used for all three Universal Orlando parks, multiple developments and expansions could be in the near future. Despite litigation to block theme park development by the land’s former owner, Georgia developer Stan Thomas (who lost the property during the recession), the area is already approved for entitlements in the hotel and tourist attraction industries.

Sources: Orlando Business Journal, Orlando Sentinel

Images: CBRE Group Inc.

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