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5 Transportation Changes Coming Soon to Walt Disney World

It may take people to make the dream of Walt Disney World a reality, but it takes buses, monorails, and boats to get the dream moving. It may sound hyperbolic, but Walt Disney World really is its own city, and as such it is constantly making changes to the various transportation options around the resort in order to better serve the guests and Cast Members who rely on Disney’s complex transportation system every day. If you are going to be riding a bus, parking tram, or even your own car, here are a few interesting changes that you should probably know about! 

1. Epcot begins entrance transformation, splits tram route into two

Image: Disney

The project to completely overhaul the entrance of Epcot began in earnest last week, with much of the front of the park’s entryway now walled off, including the former tram stop. Guests who use courtesy trams are now dropped off much farther away from the park entrance, and must now use either East or West trams to get back to their vehicle. In addition, there is now separate security for guests who arrive by car and those who arrive by bus/monorail. 

2. Permits show plans to expand the Magic Kingdom parking lot

Permits uncovered by WDWMagic show that the Magic Kingdom is considering a plan to expand its massive parking lot again in the near future. According to the permit, which is for a new retention pond, “This facility will also provide treatment for a proposed parking expansion within the Magic Kingdom Guest Parking Lot. That expansion is a part of this permit and will remove an 11.4 acre wetland and replace that same area with a paved parking surface.” Though not officially confirmed yet, with Walt Disney World attendance growing every year, an expanded parking lot at Magic Kingdom seems like a near-certainty, though we don’t know when this project might commence.

3. World Drive to enter new phase of redevelopment

Though the new overpass structure on World Drive has helped ease some of the traffic issues around the entrance of the Magic Kingdom, a second phase of redevelopment is set to kick off soon that will see an extension and realignment of World Drive and the associated ramps and frontage roads. According to a permit (which was posted on WDWMagic) Phase 2 of the World Drive extension will begin where Phase 1 ends near Floridian Way and east of the existing care care center. The end of Phase 2 ties in to Floridian Way approximately 800 feet south of Seven Seas Drive. The total project length is approximately 1.3 miles.

This second phase of redevelopment is currently still in the design and proposal phase, with construction tentatively scheduled to begin in late 2020. 

4. New details released about Disney Skyliner project

Though we don’t have an official opening date yet, Disney has been quietly testing its new Skyliner transportation option for several months now, suggesting that guests won’t have to wait too much longer to check the Skyliner out for themselves. In the meantime though, Disney has released a new video (above) as well as new facts about this new system. 

When it opens, the Disney Skyliner gondola system will feature 300 cabins, with 22 different character themes and eight vibrant colors. Each gondola is designed to accommodate up to 10 Guests, including those traveling with wheelchairs or assistive devices. With the system constantly in motion, most rides will take just a few minutes, and the cabins are specifically tailored to provide a relaxing ride in Florida’s climate.

5. Western Way extension now open

Image: Disney

One of the lesser known arteries into Walt Disney World is Western Way, which connects to SR 429 and routes guests near Disney’s Animal Kingdom. And now, an extension of this road has officially opened near Flamingo Crossings, which currently is home to a few third-party hotels, and will eventually house a Disney College Program housing facility soon as well.