Universal Beijing Resort, a major theme park in the capital's sub-center Tongzhou district, is scheduled to start trial operations in the first half next year, an official of the sub-center management committee said on Thursday.
Hu Jiulong, deputy head of the committee, said at a news conference that the resort area entered a stage of preparing for operation, which will run in parallel with construction, and after the trial operation, the opening date will be decided.
Under construction in the east of Beijing, the first phase of the resort area project includes the Universal Studios theme park, the Universal CityWalk commercial complex and two resort hotels.
The main structure of Universal Studios theme park has been finished, and the work of installing rided and performance facilities is expected to be completed by the end of the year, Hu said.
The construction of Universal CityWalk commercial complex has also been finished, and work is commencing on the wires, decorations and gardens, and the main buildings in supporting area have passed the approval, he said.
Construction of a river through Universal Beijing Resort will be completed in November, according to earlier reports. In the future, visitors will be able to enter the theme park via boat.
The 2.8-kilometer-long waterway will wind like a ribbon through the resort area in the cultural and tourist zone in Beijing's sub-center, starting from Jiukeshu Middle Road to the west side of East Sixth Ring Road.
Hotels with small docks will allow guests to board boats that will carry them to the main entrance of the park.
Universal Beijing Resort and IMAX China, a subsidiary of IMAX Corporation, recently announced an agreement to launch China's first-ever theme park destination IMAX theater.
The agreement will bring the IMAX with Laser projection system to Universal CityWalk Cinema. This agreement extends the longstanding collaboration between Universal and IMAX.
Universal Beijing Resort is owned by Beijing International Resort Co, a joint venture between Beijing Shouhuan Cultural Tourism Investment Co Ltd and Universal Parks and Resorts, a business unit of Comcast NBCUniversal.
The park is an outgrowth of the signature Universal Studios Hollywood theme park that opened in 1964.