Orange County mayor endorses Universal’s reopening plan


In this Oct. 22, 2015,file photo, park guests relax and cool off with a water mist under the globe at Universal Studios City Walk in Orlando, Fla. Universal Orlando officials announced Thursday, Aug. 1,2019, that the resort is doubling in size with plans for a fourth theme park, but they are offering almost no information on when it will open, what it will hold or how much they’re spending. The resort already operates Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure, as well as the Volcano Bay water park, in Orlando. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File)

ORLANDO, Fla. (WESH) – Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings endorsed a Universal Orlando proposal on Friday that would allow its theme parks to begin reopening in the first week of June.

The reopening plan must now be approved by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

Universal Orlando executive John Sprouls told the Orange County economic recovery task force that Universal would like to start the reopening process on June 1. Only team members would be allowed into parks on June 1 and June 2. On June 3 and June 4 Sprouls said Universal would be open for limited availability to some passholders. When the park does reopen to the public, capacity will be limited.

Universal is the first of Orlando’s major theme parks to announce a target date for a reopening since it closed in mid-March because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Visitors will have their temperature checked upon arrival, and if it’s 100.4 degrees or higher, they won’t be allowed to enter. Visitors also will have to wear face masks which they can purchase. The park will limit the capacity to ensure social distancing. They also will have cashless payment options and staggered parking.

Universal said it will close interactive play areas, eliminate water and mist elements on attractions, close valet operations, and eliminate single rider lines.

Workers also will have their temperatures checked and will have to wear face masks. All chairs and tables will be cleaned and disinfected after each seating, and high-touch areas also will be frequently cleaned.

The reopening would be an expansion on the limited reopening of Universal’s CityWalk entertainment district, which reopened last week.

You can read the full reopening plan here.


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