On this week’s episode of the WDW Fan Boys Podcast, we bring you a another Jim Hill show with Brett and Johnathen. We recorded this show on February 28th, and we discuss changes coming to Downtown Disney, Hollywood Studios, Disneyland shanghai, and more. You can check out Jim Hill’s site at jimhillmedia.com also check out his articles at Huffington Post
Downtown Disney to be re-branded into “Disney Springs”
Which will encompasses six distinct neighborhoods: The Gateway, The Town Center, The Springs, The Landing, The West Side, and The Village Marketplace. Each neighborhood will have its own distinct look and feel, described briefly below.
The Gateway, as you probably could have guessed, will be the main access point into Disney Springs. Its main goal is to improve the current parking woes and traffic nightmare Downtown Disney faces during peak seasons. The biggest addition to The Gateway will be a five level parking garage that will sit roughly where the current parking lots C and D are. Parking lots A-H will be removed to support the necessary infrastructure for the new garage, as well as a new, larger bus drop-off and pick-up area.
After The Gateway you’ll encounter The Town Center, located on what will have been parking lots E-G. The Town Center will be a busy area featuring many new retail establishments. Following The Town Center you’ll arrive in The Springs, a peaceful, relaxing area along the waterway that runs between it and the former Pleasure Island. Cross one of the new bridges, and you’ll end up in The Landing, full of dining and drinking options and offering nice views of Village Lake. Here you can expect to see several new restaurants and retail locations, as well as a new amphitheater by the water’s edge, next to Paradiso 37.
The West Side and The Village Marketplace will remain virtually the same as their current state, with a few small additions. On The West Side, the most notable changes include Planet Hollywood being turned into something called ‘The Observatory’ and losing its surrounding body of water, and a new Starbucks location replacing the current Wetzel’s Pretzels. An overhead railway (for thematic purposes only) will also run above the main stretch of path from Disney Quest down to the new Starbucks. Meanwhile, over in The Village Market Place, the former bus drop-off and pick-up area will become home to two new retail buildings, and a new bridge leading to Saratoga Springs will be constructed.
So there you have it, a brief overview of Disney Springs, the future of Downtown Disney. Below I’ve included a colored and labeled overlay of what the proposed plans will transform the area into. It’s definitely a massive project, and one that will likely create its fair share of headaches during construction. But overall, it looks to be a worthwhile addition to Walt Disney World, and hopefully one that will solve some of the current issues and criticisms that Downtown Disney faces. (Information Pulled from www.parkrumors.com)
What was not mention in this artical but was talked about with Jim Hill was the strip near Disney Quest will have a Fremont Street Experiance light show roof cover the walk way and that Disney was trying to get an exit ramp off the I-4 but the executives in the building close to it said no.
Avatarland still coming to Animal Kingdom
Avatarland is still happing but at this point Disney imagineering is still trying to figure out what they are going to do. They need to sit down and discuss what James Carmon’s vision for this land will be and they are worried that he will be busy filming the next two installments of Avatar to figure out whats going on and what they are putting in. Lets hope they create something that will draw people into the park and finally make it a full day.
It’s coming deal with it.
Harry Potter 2.0
From what Jim is saying Harry Potter 2.0 at Universal Studios Orlando will be very interesting and what they have planned for Hollywood might hurt Disneyland California. Universal also has another IP that will be coming. Disney needs to step it up.
The movies need to come out first before we will see anything in Hollywood Studios everything is still Blue Sky.
Marvel and Shanghai
Marvel going to Shanghai Disneyland. Of course we wont see that in Orlando anytime soon. Shanghai progress still slow and going.
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