Disney recently announced a wave of new changes to Epcot®, confirming rumors that have long been in play and giving more details to information first given at D23. Many fans are familiar with the new Guardians of the Galaxy coaster, one of the longest indoor coasters in the world, and the Ratatouille attraction that are on the way, but it’s becoming more apparent that the park will soon be undergoing the same transformation as Hollywood Studios®.
The New Entrance
The park’s entrance is scheduled to start undergoing construction this spring. It’ll happen in waves, so the whole entrance won’t be down at once. Among those changes are the removal of the Leave a Legacy stones, although the pictures on them will be moved to a new location in front of the park’s entrance.
There will also be new pathways, more plant life and an all-new fountain. The spine between Spaceship Earth and the World Showcase Promenade will also see an update soon, although Disney is holding onto the details for a later date.
The Play Pavilion
The Wonders of Life Pavilion is once again going to see use outside of the festivals as it converts to something all-new for theme parks. Akin to an interactive city filled with games and activities, the new pavilion, which has yet to get an official name, will also see a variety of character meet-and-greets. It begs the question that if meetups and interactivity will be the big tentpoles of the area, will Innoventions and the Character Spot see changes in the future?
It’s set to open by2021.
Speculation of new countries in World Showcase has been rife, along with an update to the ride in the Mexico pavilion to be themed around the Pixar film Coco. There’s been no official comment by Disney on the status of World Showcase as the park enters this new phase of changes, but there are some hints that the park could be further expanding.
Word has long circulated about the placement of a resort hotel at Epcot®’s entrance, and legal documents could point to that being a reality. The government documents that revealed the hotel and the moving of the park’s parking lot to the east also referred to the park by a new name: Epcot World Center.
These types of documents are pretty binding, so it seems like only a matter of time before the new name is made official. It makes sense, as the park is drifting almost completely away from Walt’s original vision, and now might be expanding to feature even more content within its borders and a hotel right on the outside.
Featured image ©Disney.