All Disney World construction projects stopped shorty after the parks closed on March 16th — which seems like such a long time ago!
But now that many of Disney’s resort hotels reopened on June 22nd, and the Disney World parks have opening dates — Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom on July 11th followed by Epcot and Hollywood Studios on July 15th — we’ve seen work on several job sites resume!
Remember when ugly orange construction cranes ruining our castle pics were the worst of our problems? We’re talkin’ much simpler times here, people!
Well, if you’re getting ready to embark on a trip to Disney World once the parks reopen, you could probably use a little refresher on what’s under construction so that you won’t be caught unaware! Spoiler alert…there’s a lot.
Construction at Magic Kingdom
Last time we were at Magic Kingdom, a significant amount of work was happening at the theme park to get ready for Disney World’s 50th-anniversary celebration in 2021.
The Walk Around the World bricks were being removed from the entrance of Magic Kingdom, which has left the area a bit more disheveled than you’re probably used to seeing it!
Although you’ll be met with a bit of an eyesore upon your arrival at Magic Kingdom, once you’re inside, Main Street U.S.A., the hub, and other lands are largely unaffected — with a few exceptions.
Honoring Cinderella’s 70th-anniversary, Magic Kingdom’s icon is receiving a new soft rosy-pinkish hue. In fact, we recently saw this project had started back up and work seems to be progressing rather quickly!
Luckily, Disney World vowed to keep Cinderella Castle uncovered while it underwent its refurbishment, but after seeing photos of how fast it’s changing colors, we wouldn’t be surprised if Disney completes this project more quickly than even they anticipated!
TRON Lightcycle Run
It’s easy to speed up an exterior paint job, but a state-of-the-art major headlining attraction is another thing. TRON Lightcycle Run is a new rollercoaster that’s expected to debut in time for the 50th-anniversary celebration. Only time will tell if the temporary closure delayed this or several other projects.
Now that the exterior track has been laid, all Tomorrowland attractions are operating as normal.
Unfortunately, the Walt Disney World Railroad is still not operating — and won’t be until the TRON is farther along. But other than a few cranes and no trains, this project shouldn’t impact your experience too much!
If there’s a spot at Disney World that’s more torn up than Magic Kingdom, it’s Epcot! This theme park originally opened in 1982 and has big plans for its own 40th celebration slated for 2022!
This park has so much construction going on, they’ve even got a name for it — the Epcot Transformation! Just like Magic Kingdom, the main entrance is getting re-do, but the reno at Epcot continues long after you enter the turnstiles.
The Leave-a-Legacy monoliths have been removed from both sides of the entryway and are being relocated to just outside of the park.
Meanwhile, large portions of Future World have been demolished. Club Cool, Fountain View Starbucks, Mouse Gear, The Character Spot, Electric Umbrella, and Pin Traders have all closed or have been relocated, and construction has finally spread to the other side of Spaceship Earth.
The former Fountain of Nations area behind Spaceship Earth is completely walled off to guests and both breezeways which formerly led to Future World East and Future World West are now blocked.
While getting around this part of the park feels very unfamiliar and isn’t very easy on the eyes, there’s a silver lining! Spaceship Earth’s been spared from the “closed for refurbishment” chopping block! Okay, maybe we’re being a bit dramatic, but the ride was supposed to close on May 26th to be reimagined and Disney announced the project has been postponed indefinitely. That means the classic Epcot attraction will be reopening with the rest of the park on July 15th!
Space 220 Restaurant
Space 220 Restaurant is a highly anticipated project that has already experienced numerous delays, but we’re hoping despite its bumpy start, Disney World will launch this new table service restaurant into orbit soon!
The building that holds the new space-themed eatery is located off to the side of Test Track and any construction that happens (or doesn’t) won’t impede your vacation other than you won’t be dining 22o miles above planet Earth for a while!
Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind
The other major construction project on this side of Epcot is Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind, a new indoor rollercoaster housed inside the former Universe of Energy building.
Again, not the most attractive sight, but don’t let this big unfinished project get you down! You’ll be zipping around with Groot, Rocket, Star-Lord, and Gamora SOON, so start thinking about how much fun that’ll be!
Even though Future World is a bit of a hot mess these days, World Showcase is relatively intact with the exception of France.
Disney announced the grand opening of Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure would be happening this summer, but never pinned down an exact date! We’ll be curious to see if the delivery date gets extended, but so far they haven’t announced anything one way or the other!
Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios
After discussing all the projects Disney has in the works at Magic Kingdom and Epcot, you might be biting your nails in fear for what construction surprises the remaining two parks hold!
But here’s the good news…you’re pretty much in the clear now that Pandora, Galaxy’s Edge, and Toy Story Land are finished, even though a new Toy Story restaurant called Roundup Rodeo BBQ is being built at Hollywood Studios!
Otherwise, only minor touch-ups are happening now at Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios! Disney completed Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway and the new dark ride had its grand opening just weeks before the closures began, so you’ll be able to enjoy BOTH of these theme parks to their fullest once they reopen!
Presumable Pedestrian Walkway
If your Disney World vacation includes a stay at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa, there appears to be a new bridge being built that will connect the hotel to Magic Kingdom!
Disney hasn’t officially released any details on the project, but we’ve been keeping a watchful eye on it for many months as it has been progressing!
It seems unlikely to be done anytime soon, but we’ll let you know when you can start hoofing it over to MK from the Grand Flo!
Another big build is happening near the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort, which might prove noisy to some guests staying at the Marriott-owned property.
A new tower of guest rooms is going in across the street, and while work on it has progressed a little during the temporary closure, the new hotel is a long way from completion.
The last little bit of construction news we have to discuss with you is happening over at Disney Springs, Disney World’s shopping and entertainment district!
Even though this section of Disney World had a major overhaul recently, a few new spots will be popping up SOON!
Construction on this location is coming along and soon we’ll have all the melt-in-you-mouth, not-in-your-hands candies we could ever want!
That’s right — Disney Springs is getting its own M&M’s Store! We can’t wait to take a photo with Yellow and Red!
In February, the high-end athletic apparel company, lululemon, announced they were headed to Disney Springs!
We’ve been checking in on its progress and it should be opening this summer!
Beatrix, a neighborhood spot to grab a quick cup of coffee or sandwich, is taking the place of Bongos.
This spot is owned by the restaurant group Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, and we can’t wait to check it out! Construction has been progressing SLOWLY here, so we’ll keep you posted with updates as we spot ’em!
Ample Hills Creamery
Ample Hills is currently in the process of being sold to a larger company and they’ve assured that stores should not be affected by the change in hands. We’re at least hoping to see the Ample Hills Creamery location at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn Resort reopen! If and when we see progress on the Disney Springs location, we’ll be sure to get the scoop on this spot for ya!
Just a few days ago, Gideon’s Bakehouse (who happens to make some of the most incredible cookies on Earth!) shared that they would be opening a location at The Landing at Disney Springs in 2020.
While they didn’t share an opening date, they did release information about unique theming and packaging, limited editions cookies and cakes, and SO much more.
So as you can see, there’s a lot of construction STILL happening at Disney World right now, but it’s probably no more than you’re used to, especially if you’ve traveled to theme parks over the last few years.
Sure, it’s a little more spread out and impacting different parks (two of the ones where we generally spend the most amount of time!), but Disney never wants their new projects to bum you out! That’s why they go to extensive lengths to make sure their “pixie dust” doesn’t get in your way of having a good time. And really, based on everything we’ve just talked about, it shouldn’t!
Still asking yourself, “Should you even go to Disney World right now with all this construction?” Click here to find out!
Which new project are you hoping Disney World will finish in time for your vacation? Tell us in the comments below!