Yesterday, we were the first to bring you news that a permit had been filed for the demolition of the “Walk Around the World” bricks and hardscape adjustments. Today, we have a closer look at other parts of the permit that outline the Magic Kingdom entrance changes to be expected in the coming months.
First, let’s start with the arrival experience from the various modes of transportation.
The bus loop will be undergoing some changes near the entrance. Some of the smaller points of change include the expansion of a nearby pond to regain some water draining areas, as well as the introduction of what appears to be some parking spaces at the end of a bus loop. It’s possible that this will be a new area for the Minnie Vans to load and unload, or it could be for support vehicles. We’ve highlighted the two minor changes to the bus loop below, starting with the parking spots added.
Here’s a look at the minor pond expansion. Note the change in the shape on the left side of the pond. It also looks like some work will be done near the bus loop bathroom
Two bigger changes include the expansion of the bag check area/walking spaces, and the modification of a bus loop to support the expansion. You can see that the walkway will be expanding to the right, allowing for a larger bag check area and permanent structure installation. Right now, bag check is simply under tents. Also, the bus loop seen on the upper right of the images below will be shortened to allow for the wider walking area.
All of these changes should allow for a smoother arrival experience as crowds continue to build year-over-year until Walt Disney World’s 50th Anniversary in 2021.
There will be some noticeable changes coming to the watercraft arrival experience as well. First, the pathways will be redesigned to eliminate the walkway that runs along the waterfront. This pathway used to be necessary when the bag check area was located in the Magic Kingdom entrance plaza. Now with bag check moving away from the central plaza and closer to the modes of transportation that guests arrive on, it’s no longer necessary to have this path. A more direct path will be created from the various watercraft arrival areas. We can also see a new bag check area for the left and center docks as well as path widening.
It looks like changes could be coming to the resort entrance to the Magic Kingdom monorail platform. As seen in the photos below, a previously marked “green area” is now being paved over and it looks like it connects to the monorail platform. This would, of course, only affect the loading area, as both the resort monorail and express monorail unload into the center of the station and use the singular, center walkway. If the area below is a new walkway, that would make it a considerably longer walk than what resort guests currently do as you’d have to pass the boat launch area to get to the monorail.
In addition to the above changes, the Transportation and Ticket Center is undergoing an extensive arrival experience overhaul right now with temporary tram drop off points and longer walks.