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Is Disney About to Abandon Another Water Park?

As all Disney fans already know, Walt Disney World is home to two water parks: Disney's Blizzard Beach and Disney's Typhoon Lagoon. While these parks only bring in a small fraction of the total number of guests who visit Walt Disney World on an annual basis, they are still among the most-visited water parks in the world, and have become a popular add-on for guests, especially those staying at the resort for a week or more. 

However, though everything seems to be going great at Disney's Typhoon Lagoon these days, some weird things have been happening at Disney's Blizzard Beach in recent months that have us a little bit concerned not only about current operations, but about the future of this park as well. However, to look at the full picture, we have to go back several months to fall 2015...

The broken water slides and the refurbishment that fixed nothing

Image: Disney

The trouble with Disney's Blizzard Beach actually started back in fall 2015, when headlining attractions Summit Plummet and Slush Gusher began closing for long stretches of time seemingly without cause. Though no official reason behind these ride closures was ever given, insiders said that a water pumping issue was behind the "technical issues" causing these slides to shut down periodically

Though this sounds like a problematic situation from the start, Disney's Blizzard Beach’s annual refurbishment was actually just around the corner when these problems began, and most fans figured that Disney would get around to fixing whatever issues were happening during the coming two month closure. After all, Disney's Blizzard Beach recently passed its 20th anniversary, and considering water park slides are subject to a lot more wear and tear than your average theme park attraction, it seems only natural that the headlining water slides at this park might need a little TLC after such a long time. The upcoming park closure seemed like the perfect time to fix whatever was causing these two rides to fail, and most guests didn't worry about these rides not functioning in the short term.  

Image: Disney

However, when Disney's Blizzard Beach reopened in 2016, it looked like the issues that were causing problems with Summit Plummet and Slush Gusher actually had not been addressed during the refurbishment. Only weeks after the park re-opened for the spring season, it shut down again without warning for several days because of issues related to these two slides. Disney's Typhoon Lagoon's own refurbishment period was even cut short so that guests could be re-routed away from Disney's Blizzard Beach in an effort to give those who really wanted to visit a water park an alternative. 

And while you might think that closing down the whole park because of two malfunctioning rides that were not fixed during a refurbishment period is a little weird, Disney's next step was even stranger... 

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There are 6 comments.

I think that this is a pretty radical theory. Yes, Disney has abandoned venues on its hands. My understanding of the issue with these rides is that it's more than just a pump malfunction - but rather a broken pipe. (http://www.orlandosentinel.com/travel/attractions/the-daily-disney/os-bl...) In the best of circumstances, that's not a quick fix. Or a cheap one. Compound this with the highly themed nature of the space, and it complicates repair work even further. I think even considering permanent park closure as an end result is a little much. Just my $.02.

Certainly a little strange but honestly, Blizzard Beach isn't going anywhere. I suspect an extensive repair that will hopefully be done in time for summer rush. MouseTeens.com

Relax people, if Blizzard Beach does require an extensive and expensive rehab/refurbishment, they could be putting it off till Volcano Bay opens just to see what they are up against.

Universal already upped the ante with the immersive theming in Diagon Alley. Disney could be holding it off to see how high bar will probably be raised in terms of Water parks and then green light a big overhaul of not only Blizzard Beach but also Typhoon Lagoon.

Don't forget they had to increase the budget for Avatar once they saw how immersive Diagon Alley was.

Maybe they want to make the whole thing Frozen themed so they are waiting. Unless it costs more to run the park than revenue they are making from it, a shut down prob wouldn't happen. I never go to the water parks though, too much to do at the actual 4, so I won't miss it either way :)

Unfortunately the last refurbishment was so long was due a structural integrity problem with the mountain itself so the pipe was a patch job again this year. The water parks are too nice of amenity to get rid of just yet in my opinion.

The pipe issue is more of the case. The park was built in the 1990s, when a certain type of water pipe was used alot around Florida that was later recalled for bursting. Maintenance crews will come in the wee hours of the morning to see a flooded parking lot. Deep underground pipes bursting and rotting away make for unpredictable closures. Super expensive, it will call for a complete overhaul, in the billons.

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