The rumors are true—the iconic Jaws ride at Universal Orlando will be closing in the near future to make room for the parks future. After the rumors began floating around the internet the past two weeks that the classic ride would be closing permanently in the coming months, Universal Studios finally confirmed that this past week, announcing that the ride would shut down forever as of January 2, 2012. With the loss though comes some gain, as the park has stated that a new attraction would replace Jaws, though no specifics or details of the attractions have been announced yet.
Jaws was one of the last remaining attractions that originally opened with the park back in 1990, already 15 years after the hit classic Jaws movie was released to mass popularity, built at a cost of $35 million. Since then, the ride has taken millions of passengers around Amity on a boat cruise (similar to Disney’s Jungle Cruise), as the skippers fight Jaws back to save the guests from becoming fish food.
The long-standing ride has built up quite a following over the years, and clearly opinions on the rides closure are mixed. The ride takes up a lot of real estate, and will free the park up for a major expansion, something it hasn’t seen in a long time, and while it was high-tech when it first opened, the ride technology is rather outdated by today’s standards. Still, the outcry of love for the ride has already been quite loud, especially following just years after the loss of another of the parks classic rides, Kongfrontation.
With the loss of its only major attraction, the entire Amity area will also be closed and renovated for the parks future attraction that will take place of Jaws and the Amity area. No information has been given on when the announcements may work their way out to the public, but by opening up such a large plot of real-estate and closing such a beloved classic ride, one can only hope that it’s something big.