The Ever-Expanding Mouse


Because we all know Disney is not big enough…check it out: This little rumor says that Disney could be adding more retail and hotel space to the western end of their property. This was brought on by the recent expansion of 429, which will ostensibly bring in more tourist traffic from a new direction, particularly once it connects with I-4.

I think they mean we’ll see more shops and hotels around the Blizzard Beach/Coronado Springs area, but I could be off with my geography.

I wonder what they might be thinking about for the area? Sea World recently created some kind of complex within their park that feeds the retail beast, but one wonders how much more retail The Mouse can handle with their gargantuan World of Disney store (pictured) already raking in cash at the Disney Marketplace. Pleasure Island is getting a facelift, too, which will turn the whole Downtown Disney/Marketplace area into one big entertainment, shopping, and dining mecca. With no additional parking. Fun times.

So what should they build in the free space? Personally, I’d like to see a real, official answer to Universal’s CityWalk. Disney has some major entertainment connections, and if they really wanted to, they could probably create awesome clubs and restaurants–and maybe even an entertainment center like Hard Rock Live. (The key phrase is, “if they wanted to.”)

And I know everyone feels that the new-park era is over, but I’d kinda like to think they could jam one more little one in there someplace. C’mon, do we need more hotels? Restaurants? Shopping? Let’s theme-park the tourists to death! Then they have to come back and spend money, don’t they? I picture a real AMUSEMENT park, with rollercoasters and a Ferris wheel and one of those puke-inducing tilt-a-whirl rides. Wouldn’t that be cool? Think about it: we have everything else on the planet here in Orlando, park-wise, but we have no answer for the Six Flags crowd. We could stuff a couple of ‘coasters in the dead space back there, couldn’t we?

Anyway, those are my big ideas. What are yours?

3 Comments so far

  1. francomom (unregistered) on November 10th, 2006 @ 6:58 am

    Orlando had an amusement park (or 2) about a billion years ago. Circus World that later was revamped into Boardwalk and Baseball. Both went under apparently not able to compete with the Mouse on steroids.

  2. Terry Howard (unregistered) on November 10th, 2006 @ 9:42 am

    I loved B&B, it was like having the fair permanently in town (but without the carnies.) Very ride heavy and no overbearing branding or mascots to get in the way. Seems like every ride at the current parks has either a message to promote during or a stuffed doll to sell you at the end. It was kinda nice for a while to have a place where a ride was just a ride.

  3. Jeff (unregistered) on November 29th, 2006 @ 4:08 pm

    What really jumps out at me in this is … no additional parking?!? Isn’t it possible that nightmarish parking scenarios will eventually outweigh the fascination with shopping or dining out in these places? I suppose not if you’re from out of town and rented a car. …

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