The Frisco, Texas City Council and the Frisco Planning and Zoning Commission voted to approve a Universal theme park planned for the Dallas suburb last night in a meeting that featured many vocal critics. The theme park, which will be located off of the Dallas North Tollway, is set to cater specifically to families with children between the ages of 3-11. The Planning and Zoning Commission voted unanimously to approve the park for a Special Use Permit to be forwarded to the City Council for approval. The City Council then voted 4-2 to approve the project.
The new Universal park is set to be placed on a 97 acre parcel, and will likely include a 300 room hotel. About 30 acres of the land will be dedicated to the theme park, with the rest of the space being used for parking and hotel space. While there are light and noise ordinances in place, the park could operate from as early as 8:00 AM to as late as 10:00 PM. Structures on the site could reach higher than 100 feet. The total area of the park is approximately half the size of Six Flags Over Texas, located approximately 30 miles away.
The park is expected to welcome about 7,000 visitors during weekdays, and twice as many on weekends. For comparison, the city expects a nearby H-E-B grocery store and the local Stonebriar Mall to welcome more guests than the Universal park on a daily basis.
Not much is known about the plans for the park, which is set to begin construction later this year, and has a goal of opening in 2026. However, the concept art and renderings give us a few clues.
Looking northeast from King George Lane, guests will be able to see two towering structures above the tree line and hotel. In this particular rendering, it looks like two possible locations for castle turrets or towers. The renderings may fuel rumors of a potential Hogwarts Castle, but it is unclear whether the Frisco-based Universal Studios park will feature the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
Concept art for the theme park is subject to change, but a previous rendering appears to show a Dreamworks-themed park which would seemingly leave the Wizarding World out altogether. The concept art below shows a hotel with clouds on the ground and what looks like the DreamWorks logo at the park entrance.
There are four colorful lands featured in this concept art, also all seemingly inspired by DreamWorks properties. Camp Cretaceous (an animated “Jurassic World” spinoff) is in the top left and “Shrek” is in the top right. The other two lands appear to be “Trolls” and “Madagascar.”
The Frisco City Council and its planning and zoning committee were originally scheduled to vote on the permits required on February 7. The vote was postponed to February 21 and then postponed a second time to March 7. A traffic analysis regarding the new park was also released and updated this month. The proposed park is anticipated to attract 7,500 guests on an average day & 20,000 on peak days and will hire at least 643 Team Members.
Several residents living in the Cobb Hill neighborhood, near the park’s proposed location, have been speaking out against the new park. Steve Cone, a member of the planning and zoning committee and Cobb Hill resident, said it’s important to educate Frisco’s citizens about the theme park as well as listen to their concerns. More information about the park will be made available during a public presentation tomorrow night.