After being closed for more than one year, magic is back at the Disneyland Resort theme parks! Disneyland is rethinking how they can expand in the future with Project DisneylandForward.
DisneylandForward is Disney’s effort to work with the city of Anaheim to grow the Disneyland resort, update the blueprint for the resort district, and propel their economic rebound following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Thinking big and leading the way is both our legacy and our best path forward. Now is the time to be bold, to dream, to believe, and to lead! The world-renowned Disneyland Resort is poised to bring back jobs to our community as well as new entertainment and experiences to loyal fans and new audiences for generations to come.Ken Potrock, President, Disneyland Resort
In the 1990s, the City of Anaheim approved specific plans that would guide the growth of the Disneyland Resort and businesses in the newly formed Anaheim Resort area. These specific plans created districts or zones that largely specified what type of development could be built where. It also established strict guidelines regarding development size, height limits and streetscape standards.
The results were dramatic: a second Disney theme park, Anaheim’s first luxury hotel, a Downtown Disney District, a world-class Anaheim Resort with consistent signage and landscaping, an expanded and improved Convention Center, and transformative infrastructure, including parking areas, first responder services and utilities to accommodate future tourist-serving growth, and a comprehensive regional transportation plan.
To this day, Disney continues to invest in the Anaheim Resort with exciting additions like Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway, and the soon-to-open Avengers Campus at Disney California Adventure Park. Unfortunately, the addition of more attractions and experiences in the future may be limited under current inflexible planning restrictions unless we remove and replace treasured rides and attractions in our parks today.
The Immersive Theme Park westside expansion envisions a theme park on the Downtown Disney and Lilo and Stitch parking lots woven amid the Disneyland Hotel and Paradise Pier Hotel.
Disney officials described the west-side site bounded by Katella Avenue, Walnut Street, Magic Way and Disneyland Drive as more of a theme park expansion than a new 3rd theme park.
Concept art of the west-side site shows a central mountain surrounded by water with buildings interspersed on the south end of the property. A mountain ridge to the west separates the theme park from nearby neighborhoods.
The west-side site links up with Downtown Disney near the unused AMC Theater and ESPN Zone.
Concept art of the northern end of the west-side site includes an Autopia-like car course and a Dumbo-like spinning ride.
The Disney Entertainment Destination east-side expansion would bring together theme park experiences, hotels, retail, dining and entertainment on the Toy Story parking lot next to the Anaheim Convention Center.
The east-side site on the 56-acre Fujishige strawberry-farm-turned-Disney-parking-lot has long been discussed as a possible “third park” for future theme park expansion.
Concept art of the east-side retail area features a central lagoon surrounded by shops and a low-rise hotel with a parking structure near the corner of Haster Street & Katella Avenue.
Disney will need more flexibility in Anaheim to accommodate the new integrated experiences. Retail, dining, entertainment, theme parks and hotels are all part of the same experiences in the same place. And Disney will need the space in their lands to create story-rich environments
The DisneylandForward plan also includes possible new parking along Disney Way.
With DisneylandForward and updated approvals, the Disneyland Resort will continue to be an industry leader in bringing first-of-a-kind offerings to Anaheim.
This property could be the perfect location to cater to locals, conventioneers, hotel and Disneyland Resort guests with restaurants, hotels, live music, shopping, ticketed shows and theme park experiences modeled after the popular Disney Springs at Walt Disney World Resort.
To support future development over the next few decades, Disney plans to significantly invest in transportation, parking, transit and pedestrian safety measures to improve mobility throughout The Anaheim Resort. In the future, Disney envisions creating a new parking destination on the east side of The Anaheim Resort, which would include a pedestrian bridge with upgraded entrance accessibility for hotels and businesses located along Harbor Boulevard. In addition, Disney will continue to work with area businesses and the city to invest in and encourage the use of public transit and ride-sharing for our cast and guests.
Right now Disneyland is at the beginning stages of the process. While the project will be refined over time, they hope to explore the creation of integrated experiences featuring new theme park attractions, dining, retail, hotel, and more. Right now, they don’t have any specific projects planned for the future. To be clear, Disney is not seeking any public funding for DisneylandForward, nor are we seeking additional square footage or hotel rooms beyond what is currently approved and allowed. Rather, they are simply asking to update their existing approvals to allow for integrated development to be located and built on Disney properties.
To read more about Disneyland Forward and to see some of the answered questions from Disney visit here.
Source Disneyland Forward