Peppa Pig is taking on Shrek, SpongeBob SquarePants and the Trolls in a schoolyard brawl between Legoland and Universal Studios to decide who rules the playground with dueling Texas theme parks aimed squarely at preschoolers and tweens.
Legoland parent Merlin Entertainments announced plans this week for a new Peppa Pig theme park in the Dallas-Fort Worth area just as Comcast got the green light to build a Universal Studios kids theme park on the other side of town.
The Peppa Pig theme park will open in 2024 north of Fort Worth in North Richland Hills just a 40-minute drive from the Universal kids theme park north of Dallas in Frisco that is set to open by 2026.
Both parks will target the same audience: Preteen kids and their parents.
The Peppa Pig theme park will feature rides, shows, playgrounds and character meet-and-greets next door to a city-owned water park.
Merlin CEO Scott O’Neil described the Peppa Pig theme park as the “natural next step in our expansion and rollout” in a statement released by the company.
The Frisco city council approved plans this week for Universal’s kid-friendly theme park and a 300-room themed hotel with $12.7 million in economic incentives.
The Universal kiddie park will be broken into themed lands with concept art showing areas dedicated to Shrek, Trolls and Jurassic World.
Both of the new Texas theme parks geared to young kids will be pipsqueak small in a state known for going 10-gallon hat big.
The 30-acre Universal Studios kids park will be built on a fairly small footprint by modern theme park standards. The original 4.5-acre Peppa Pig theme park next door to Legoland Florida is even smaller.
By comparison, the Disneyland resort sits on 500 acres. Universal’s new Epic Universe theme park under construction in Florida is even bigger at 750 acres. The mammoth Walt Disney World resort in Florida dwarfs them all at 47 square miles.