Disneyland Hints at Adding 16 New Rides!
Ordinarily, bureaucratic paperwork isn’t interesting to anyone, least of all Disney fans.
We’re borderline obsessed with some recent documents that Disney has updated, though.
In the Environmental Impact Report for the DisneylandForward project, we’ve discovered several tantalizing possibilities.
Friends, Disneyland Resort could add as many as 16 new attractions and maybe even a new nighttime extravaganza.
Let’s talk about what we’ve learned.
The Plan for DisneylandForward
We’ve talked extensively about the potential plans for Disneyland expansion.
Park officials have proven unusually forthcoming about their ideas, presumably because of extenuating circumstances.
Disney is currently asking the Anaheim City Council to approve changes to established rules regarding the management of Disneyland Resort.
At the moment, Disney cannot build out the Disneyland campus as desired. So, it’s attempting to convince Anaheim City Council members to modify existing terms.
Disney has filed the paperwork to invest $60 billion on theme park expansion over the coming decade.
Technically, company officials will direct that money toward multiple parts of the Parks, Experiences and Products division.
Still, Disney executives have flatly stated what we can expect at the parks. They even told us about the potential franchises that may be coming soon.
Simultaneously, Disney has suggested that a few potential pitfalls remain, but those warnings are unlikely to occur.
Instead, Disney appears committed to dramatic expansion at Walt Disney World and Disneyland alike.
These new filings with Anaheim’s government provide insights into what Disney has planned.
Importantly, many of these ideas aren’t new, either. Parks Chairman Josh D’Amaro and Disney CEO Boby Iger have previously referenced them.
Detailed plans exist somewhere at Disney. Now, park planners are adding the paperwork, which is typically one of the latter stages of pre-production.
The ideas we’re about to discuss aren’t solely blue-sky at this point. Disney has every intention of bringing several of them into reality.
Disneyland’s Expansion Plans
So, the question becomes, “Which ones?”
Remarkably, we’ve got a really good idea because the super-boring 17,000-page Environmental Impact Report includes specific examples.
Before you get your hopes up, I should clarify that a lot of this stuff remains in air quotes and could change before Disney breaks ground.
Park officials may feel strongly about the franchise but still modify the attraction design. It happens more than you’d think.
Still, Disney analysts and fans alike have combed through all 17,000 pages to find anything applicable to park development and/or expansion.
I’ve already provided the basics in previous DisneylandForward/Disneyland expansion articles the past few weeks.
What I haven’t done yet is talk about specific attractions because I don’t want to get your hopes up, only to dash them later.
However, I’m now noticing other analysts running with these stories, and I figure that if you’re hearing them anyway, at least I can provide some insight.
As mentioned, Disneyland Resort is eyeballing Katella Avenue, Disneyland Drive, and Magic Way as the place to build the next phase of the campus.
Notably, despite current ordinances, Disney has suggested a couple of thrill rides that could very well be roller coasters.
I said a couple of weeks ago that Disney probably couldn’t build up that high due to neighborhood restrictions.
Apparently, Disney officials believe they can overcome such potential obstacles.
In fact, Disney displays some bravado with its filing, as the plan calls for a total of 16 new attractions plus a new show.
Let’s talk about what the next version of The Happiest Place on Earth could include.
Breaking down the 16 Attractions into Groups
Obviously, Disney isn’t about to construct 16 E-ticket attractions. It’s a business and must justify any financial investments.
For this reason, you can expect a mix of high-quality rides with some that are family-friendly filler.
As a devout fan of Alien Swirling Saucers, I’m definitely not dismissing such attractions as unworthy.
I’m merely pointing out that Disney shouldn’t and won’t build the 16 greatest rides ever. It’d be overkill.
The introduction of new themed lands and theme parks comes with an established blueprint.
Disney will create a mix of attractions. Some of them will blow your mind, while others will serve the dual purposes of entertaining guests and siphoning traffic.
According to the Environmental Impact Report, Disneyland will add seven indoor rides, seven outdoor rides, and two “round rides.”
Let’s start with the round rides or, as I call them, the cheapest attractions.
When Disney refers to round rides, it’s discussing attractions like Dumbo the Flying Elephant, Magic Carpets of Aladdin, and TriceraTop Spin.
Of course, these rides come in more exotic forms as well. For instance, Astro Orbiter is technically a round ride, as is King Arthur Carrousel.
You can probably expect at least one flat spinner ride and then either an upscale version like the Astro Orbiter or a carousel as the second attraction.
The other 14 attractions are where the fun part of the conversation begins.
The paperwork indicates that Disneyland will add nine (!) family rides, five of which are outdoor attractions. The rest are indoors.
Surprisingly, Disney will also build five thrill rides, which will require a sizable financial investment.
Three of the thrill rides will be indoors, while the filing indicates two will operate outdoors. I’m skeptical about that latter belief, but it’s in the filing.
What to Expect from the Rides
Obviously, not all thrill rides are created equal. Similarly, some family rides are closer to Storybook Land Canal Boats, while others are…Soarin’.
Thankfully, Disney included some hints and even a few examples for clarification. So, we’re not guessing here.
The two outdoor thrill rides should remind you of The Incredicoaster and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. Those sure sound like roller coasters to me.
Meanwhile, the three indoor thrill ride comparisons include Space Mountain and…Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance.
Since Rise of the Resistance is arguably the best attraction in the world today, it sets a high bar.
If Disneyland adds anything like that, the other 15 attractions almost won’t matter. That’s not how Disney thinks, though.
Park strategists want to build an entirely new set of rides to attract more guests to Disneyland Resort.
Disney feels confident that the demand is there. The bottleneck stems from a lack of space at the current Disneyland Resort theme parks.
New rides provide the solution to this puzzle. Disney intends to provide a nice mix with outdoor attractions akin to Autopia and Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree.
Obviously, you won’t visit the parks just for those attractions, but they’ll give you something to do when you need to ride something.
As for the four indoor family rides, you should think New Orleans Square.
That’s because the comparisons for these new offerings are Haunted Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean.
I realize that I’m throwing a lot at you right now, which is what happens when Disney randomly drops a 17,000-page document on the official Anaheim site.
So, let’s quickly summarize the 16 attractions like this. Please think about Disneyland Resort in its current form.
Now, consider how much better it would be if Disney suddenly added 16 attractions themed to Coco, Encanto, Tangled, Tron, and so forth.
We’re apparently looking at:
- Two flat rides like Astro Orbiter and Dumbo the Flying Elephant
- Two outdoor thrill rides like the Incredicoaster and Tron Lightcycle / Run
- Three indoor thrill rides like Space Mountain, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, and Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway
- Five outdoor family rides like Autopia, Goofy’s Sky School, Grizzly River Run, Jungle Cruise, and Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree
- Four indoor family rides like Haunted Mansion, Indiana Jones Adventure, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Soarin’
When you contemplate the expansion in those terms, you realize how dramatically Disneyland Resort will expand.
For comparison, Disney’s Hollywood Studios offers nine rides, while Disney’s Animal Kingdom operates seven.
This proposed expansion would bring as many rides to Disneyland Resort as those two parks currently claim. It’s a massive expansion plan!
Oh, and I haven’t even touched on the other part. This new section of the Disneyland Campus will add a new nighttime presentation as well!
This filing describes the show as similar to Fantasmic! and World of Color. So, it sounds epic, too.
You can understand why this project could mean so much to the future of Disneyland!
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Feature (Christian Thompson/Disneyland Resort)