Universal Studios announced on Monday plans for a theme park in suburban Beijing that will open in 2019.
The $3.3 billion project on 300 acres will be jointly owned by Beijing Shouhuan, a consortium of four Chinese state-owned companies, and Universal Parks & Resorts, in Orlando, a division of NBCUniversal.
Universal currently owns and operates theme parks in Universal City and Orlando, and has licensing deals on parks in Japan and Singapore.
The project will mix Chinese-themed attractions with rides and exhibits found at the other Universal parks, including ones based on Harry Potter and Transformers film franchises, according to media reports.
The theme park will tap into what is becoming a lucrative market for Chinese tourism dollars and will compete against other entertainment-related projects being built by U.S. companies.
Walt Disney Co. is constructing the $5 billion Shanghai Disney Resort, scheduled to open in 2015. The Burbank entertainment and media company also began construction this year on the first Disney Store on mainland China, in Shanghai’s Lujiazui Finance District. The complex, to be completed next year, features a retail store and a Disney-themed outdoor plaza.
Disney’s first foray into China was Hong Kong Disneyland, which opened in 2005 at a cost of $3 billion and underwent a $500 million expansion two years ago.
DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. in Glendale has a 45 percent stake in the $2.4 billion Dream Center being built with Chinese partners. It is scheduled to open in 2017 or early 2018 with movie theaters, bars, restaurants, performance venues, outdoor plazas and a theater district modeled on Broadway and London’s West End.
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