Epcot, like the rest of the Disney parks worldwide, was never intended to be finished. They’d be expanded, things would change, etc. But there would never be a time when Disney would sit back on its laurels and say, “It’s done.”
Whether you’re a fan or just a recent visitor to Epcot, one of the four parks at Walt Disney World, you know that the park is in the midst of a huge reconstruction. There is construction almost everywhere, including:
- Takumi-Tei (new “signature dining experience” at Japan pavilion)
- Disney Skyliner (gondola system designed to connect several hotels and parks)
- Guardians of The Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind (roller coaster that’s replacing Ellen’s Energy Adventure in Future World)
- Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure (dark ride that’s being added to the France pavilion)
- Beauty & The Beast Sing-Along (will run in rotation with Impressions de France film)
- Widening of pathways between Future World & World Showcase
- Canada Pavilion (remodel and getting a new film)
- China Pavilion (getting a new film)
- United States Pavilion (Regal Eagle Smokehouse replacing Liberty Inn)
- Leave A Legacy “tombstones” are being relocated to just outside the park’s gates
- Odyssey Events Pavilion will host The Epcot Experience, which will feature interactive exhibits to help visualize park projects
- Space 220 (new space-themed restaurant near Mission: SPACE)
Transformations that will begin soon
- Future World will change from one land to three: World Discovery, World Celebration and World Nature, which will fit in better with the currently-existing World Showcase. This reimagining will include closing (and, depending on what it is, moving) Fountain of Nations, Electric Umbrella, Camera Center, Innoventions East, Character Spot, Pin central, Fountain View Starbucks, Club Cool, Mouse Gear, Art of Disney.
- Land Pavilion – Awesome Planet Earth film will begin in the former Circle of Life theater
- Play pavilion in the old Wonders of Life pavilion
- United Kingdom Pavilion (walk-through addition of Mary Poppins’ Cherry Tree Lane)
- Journey of Water (as per Disney, this “first-ever experience based on the Walt Disney Animation Studios hit film, ‘Moana’,” will allow guests interact with magical, living water in a beautiful and inspiring setting.)
- Epcot Forever – new, temporary show that will replace the 20-year-old Illuminations
- HarmonioUS – new permanent show that will replace Epcot Forever
- France Pavilion – Crepe store, La Crêperie de Paris, will be built near the upcoming Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure.
- World Celebration Pavilion (According to Disney, the three-story structure will provide “a stunning view of World Showcase and an ideal spot to witness the park’s nighttime spectacular.” Yeah…expect to pay for that view)
- Spaceship Earth (as per Disney, “New narration and an entirely new musical score will focus on the moments and ideas that define our story. You will follow a magical “story light” that brings the entire experience to life in dynamic ways, giving each scene energy and beauty that ties the entire journey together.”)
- New park entrance that will be reminiscent of the original park entrance, with more greenery
Wow, that’s a LOT! Granted, some of the things are smaller scale and we won’t even see the transformation. But others are ongoing projects that are HUGE and are causing mazes of construction walls throughout Future World.
Besides all of that, did you know about all the things that were originally supposed to be included, but weren’t? Fascinating stuff – take a look:
This is usually the case with most Disney parks – what’s originally suggested and what eventually happens are usually two entirely different things, usually due to budget. But it’s still cool to see what was being considered, as well as what eventually made it to other places at Disney parks.
*** Thanks to Wendy B. and Jeff F. for their assistance in this post!
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary