Downtown Disney to be transformed into Disney Springs by 2016. The plan is for the current retail and dining hot spot to double in size and have the same intricate theming found in the parks and resorts.
Disney Springs gets its name from the interconnecting springs and waterways planned to connect the four outdoor neighborhoods. Disney Springs will take its cue from vibrant water front communities in Florida and will feature a signature water tower and grand entry.
The Marketplace will remain in its current location, but expand, including World of Disney the largest Disney store. An over-the-water pedestrian bridge is planned to connect Rainforest Cafe and T-Rex Café.
The West Side which already features entertainment, dining, and retail venues will feature an elevated spaces that will provide shade and birds eye views of the activities featured below.
A new edition, The Landing, will be located in the current location of Pleasure Island and will feature dining, retail, and waterfront views.
Also new, The Town Center, will be located in what is now a parking area. Slated to offer retail and dining opportunities this space will also a promenade and grand entrance to Disney Springs.
Speaking of parking, the plan is to build parking ramps during the expansion and Disney has already requested permission to redirect traffic via an off ramp of the nearby highway that would lead directly into Disney Springs parking.
Disney Springs will be greatly anticipated by guests and fans and will also offer a boon to the local economy with an estimated 1,200 construction jobs and 4,000 operational roles upon completion.
As Disney fans and frequent visitors to Downtown Disney, we can’t wait to see what the outcome of this expansion and re-theming. It will take us a while, however, to get the new name into our vocabulary.