Of course, a massive expansion like the one we’re proposing for DLP would not happen all at once but in several phases and over several years. The following 5 phases were designed in a way that impacts the park’s day-to-day operations as little as possible but there would still be extended times of closed areas and a severe impact on the Disneyland Railroad.
In Phase 1, we try to add as many attractions as we can in areas that won’t affect guests or will at least not greatly change the guest experience. This includes the long-dormant area between Temple and Pirates (where Stitch and the Tiki Room are going, including the new shortcut for guests), the empty space in Fantasyland (Alice), an area currently outside of the park’s boundaries (MMRR), and the dead-end where the Haunted Mansion’s cemetery is (Ghoulish Delights). With these new attractions and offerings in place, thanks to the added capacity, we can start to close down things for Phases 2 and 3 – most notably the whole of Discoveryland and the Railroad, but also the Riverboat and the Frontierland Playground (most likely, the Chaparrel Theater would have to close for a while too until the new paths in that area have been finished).
Phase 2 and 3 happen simultaneously, the only difference is that Phase 2 finishes much earlier and therefore can return offerings to guests more quickly. After finishing this second phase, we can reopen the central area of Discoveryland (Visionarium, Orbitron, and Space Mountain – plus Star Tours until it closes for good in Phase 5) and while the guest experience will still suffer from the construction walls in all corners, the rides are at least open. Also, guests will be treated to the new Fantasmique nighttime show as soon as Phase 2 is completed (and roughly at this time, the Chaparral Theater should be accessible again as well).
Phase 3 starts at the same time as the previous one but due to the much more extensive workload in these areas, the projects will end much later. The hope would be that most of the very noisy demolition of Autopia and the clearing out of the Hypérion as well as the subsequent land grading in both Discoveryland and Adventureland (Indy) can be finished within the second phase while construction of the new buildings would kick off Phase 3. At this stage, with three massive projects at our hand, we have to prioritize some areas over others to return/increase capacity for the park and minimize the impact on the guest experience. This is why the combined Ariel/Hypérion update and expansion are fast-forwarded, next to open would be Indy and last in this Phase is the big undertaking that is the Mysterious Island sub-land in Discoveryland including the new Nautilus attraction.
As this concludes all the work that has to be done within the boundaries of the Railroad tracks, roundtrips can resume for the time being, at least until we’re headed into Phase 5. Also, guests should be much less impacted by the work from here on out, which is especially true for Phase 4 which happens outside of the current park perimeter and won’t bother park operations at all.
Phase 5 on the other hand will bring back inconveniences for guests with the railroad having to be shut down one final time before completion of the project and some attractions being closed down for good, including Star Tours and its store, Star Port, and Mickey’s PhilharMagic. Also, slight operational changes would have to be made to Space Mountain whose photo location won’t be accessible anymore during the expansion of this area.
This last phase also includes the introduction of the Skyliner, as by this time, the expansion of Marvel would have extended all the way into Production Courtyard in WDS where the HeliCarrier station for the Skyliner will be located and the new hotel Disney’s Vieux Carré de Nouvelle Orléans across the lake from Sequoia lodge would have been built, too, ideally with the Skyliner station already prebuilt or at least some land set aside for the station. The last Skyliner station in the Arctic port of entry in Disney’s World of Exploration, the 3rd gate, would most likely be added at a later date.
Overall and realistically, an expansion and overhaul like this would need a timeframe of roughly 15-20 years until completion but would offer guests something new to experience every 1-2 years within that time frame. In conjunction with an equally ambitious plan for Walt Disney Studios and an entirely original 3rd gate, plus the currently IRL planned renovation and expansion of Disney Village – as well as additional hotels to accommodate for extra guests that the expansion will draw, Disneyland Resort Paris would not only catch up to its brothers and sisters around the globe but could become a flagship resort for the company.
This concludes today’s article! We hope you’ve enjoyed it!
Full credit to Wicket Mr. Wombat for all the ideas and designs!
As always, That’s a Wrap!
Haunted dining room design
Haunted dining room design
Chip & Dale Treehouse
(Jim Shull, DL Anaheim)
Pooh’s Hunny Hunt (Tokyo DL)