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The Venezuelan architect behind the extreme attractions of the Universal theme park

The Venezuelan architect behind the extreme attractions of the Universal theme park

Like any architect, Gabriela Lander has the challenge of designing safe structures, but she must also guarantee that they can be flooded, set on fire and offer immersive experiences, some with extreme speeds, to theme park visitors. Universalin Floridaas he says in an interview with EFE.

Of Venezuelan origin and Director of Facilities Design at Universal Orlando Resortthe expert says that she is in charge of the buildings that house the attractions, including some with “very advanced maneuvers” like the roller coaster VelociCoaster.

Lander explains that this attraction of Islands of Adventure has two fast-paced, high-speed pitches “very unique”one of which reaches about 112 kilometers (70 miles) per hour in less than two and a half seconds, and offers a sensation of 12 seconds of weightlessness.

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However, he says, the physical emotion must be accompanied by an environment that tells a cinematographic story, in this case that of Jurassic World.

It is a huge architectural challenge because they are stories that are full of fantasies that must come true for the public, he says.

In the VelociCoaster, visitors feel the chase of the dinosaurs, and even their breathing, as part of an experience that begins in the same row with an environment of rocks and several of these large specimens making noises, gestures and menacing looks.

“The idea is to transport visitors to a dynamic environment inspired by the movies”indicates.

“All the movements of the roller coaster, the pirouettes, are a technological reaction to the story” of these huge creatures that seek “grab” to the passenger.

Lander says that the design begins with a brainstorm that is overwhelming because it is the creators of the film production, together with a multidisciplinary team, who begin to devise the attractions that she has to make a reality, in a safe way and complying with the building regulations.

“There are many disciplines that you have to integrate. You have from the filmmakers, the writers, the producers, the more technical part, the engineers, the companies that actually design the details and build the roller coasters themselves.”, indicates.

He adds that the most difficult thing is precisely the integration of all these disciplines, a job that takes years.

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Born in USA but taken when she was very small to the city of Maracay (Venezuela) when her parents returned to her country, she remembers that since she was a child she wanted to be an inventor and over the years an architect because she “I liked to build houses”.

But at the same time he tells that he liked it “develop stories and characters”.

Lander is in charge at Universal of integrating the new attractions into an existing park and being in charge of the master plans for the construction of not only the attraction but all the associated services, a creative job that he wanted to do from his first visit to these downtown parks Florida when I was a fifteen year old.

“When I first came to Universal I thought ‘That’s what I want to do’”remember.

With her eyes set on that goal, the Hispanic returned to USA to learn the English language, validated the architecture studies he had done at the Simón Bolívar University in Venezuela, later moved to Orlando and sought to work with a company that provided services to Universal.

“It’s a dream come true” says Lander, who has worked for Universal theme parks for nine years.

He explained that his role is to make sure that the buildings not only “Comply with code, but are equipped with everything necessary to supply and feed the show.”

He wryly says that while commercial architects should avoid making facilities “they get water or they catch fire”, she has to do in some way the opposite.

“In this industry as an architect I have to design and provide a facility not only that it does not get water, it is that we flood it on purpose. It’s not that it doesn’t catch fire, it’s that we set fire to it on purpose”details.

“It is fascinating”says Lander.

He stresses that his greatest satisfaction is getting visitors to disconnect from their day to day and “immerse yourself in these worlds that we are creating for you”.

Source: EFE

Source: Gestion

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