Thursday, March 14, 2013

Disney Announces New Version of Downtown Disney - Disney Springs

It had been rumored for weeks and it has officially been announced today.  Downtown Disney will be seeing a complete refurbishment.  In addition, it will be receiving a brand new name...Disney Springs.

For those who have missed it (how could you, it's been all over the Disney news streams), Disney Springs is going to include even more dining, shopping, and entertainment options amid beautiful open-air promenades, meandering springs and waterfront charm.  The area will get it's inspiration from Florida waterfront towns and include lots of water features such as a flowing spring and vibrant lakefronts, plus a water tower.

This new area will double the number of stores and restaurants, from 75 to 150.  In addtion, Disney Springs will be themed around four different neighborhoods.  The are: 

  • Town Center:  will offer a sophisticated mix of shopping and dining along with a promenade where guests can relax.
  • The Landing:  A colorful and thriving commercial district with inspired dining and beautiful waterfront views.
  • Marketplace: Family friendly area that will continue to delight guests of all ages by combining new experiences, such as an over-the-water pedestrian causeway and an expanded World of Disney store.
  • West Side: Provides an exuberant atmosphere with lively entertainment, along with a series of new elevated spaces that provide both shade and an overlook to the activity below.
 In addition, Disney is going to be building two parking garages (on the Marketplace and West Side sides of Downtown Disney.)  This new area will begin construction next month and it will be finished by 2016.

My thoughts:

I am actually kind of excited to see something happening with Downtown Disney.  I personally know that the idea of Pleasure Island died a long time ago and that Disney would be going towards the trend of these sort of "outdoor malls" that seem to be popping up everywhere and are extremely popular.  It was a natrual fit that Downtown Disney turned into something like this.  It's just the economy ruined a lot of these plans.  I know I personally like to visit these types of shopping centers.  They make for a great day trip and at Disney will certainly appeal to both visitors and locals. 

Of course, I can only hope that Disney decides to include something like the Adventurer's Club again, just tweaked.    I mean, according to the rumors, they are planning on including some of their own shops and restuarants still.  (Like Trader Sams...or something called Disney Burger.) It allows a girl to hold out hope.  (though, trust me, I'm not holding out much.) 

I also am glad to see that they plan on building a parking structure for guests.  If you've been to Downtown Disney and have ever tried to park, you know what a cluster that is.  It is absolutely awful to try to find parking, with people often stalking people for their spots.

Overall, this is a very exciting development and I cannot wait to find out more information as time goes on.

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