The most popular park at Walt Disney World is far and away Magic Kingdom, which was based upon the genius design thought up by Walt Disney when he built Disneyland. The centerpiece of the Kingdom is Cinderella Castle, which towers over the rest of the park, drawing in visitors to daytime and nighttime entertainment that is capped off with a massive fireworks display. Disney has just announced that the Central Plaza in front of the castle, known as the hub of the park to fans, is undergoing some changes over the next year!
The Disney Parks Blog today confirmed a rumor that has been drifting online recently – that the Magic Kingdom hub would receive some alterations. There will now be two more pathways that enter and leave the central hub. The more obvious change will be the addition of more trees and sculpted gardens, which is inspired by the grounds of European castles. Considering that the plaza is quite popular, and draws in many guests, offering more paths for easier travel should help to keep traffic moving. The new greenery, meanwhile, will dramatically introduce more colors into the area, which will likely be stunning in person (and in the millions of pictures taken there).
Disney has shared a video offering a rendering of a fly-over of how the Central Plaza will appear:
What you may not be able to see immediately in the video is the special fireworks viewing area that will be able to be reserved through FastPass+. Since the addition of the nightly fireworks to the reservation system last year, Disney has had to artificially create a viewing area, but the planning and construction should make for a more organized solution. Also, the enhancements will allow greater outdoor seating areas for the restaurants close by, Casey’s Corner and The Plaza – it will actually increase by 100% at both restaurants, which is great news for those looking to grab a seat.
Work has already begun, so it will be in progress while still allowing guests to travel through the area. It is scheduled to be completed sometime in 2015. It will be exciting to see the results, which I hope will be beautiful!
UPDATE: I’ve added a GIF of a Google Maps satellite image transitioning into the new rendering, so you can get a better idea of where the changes are being made. Specificially, you can see the pathways being carved into the bottom of the image, where you would first enter the plaza from Main Street, U.S.A.