Though Walt Disney World has tons of new projects in the works for its four theme parks (plus Disney Springs) one area of the resort that guests have always criticized Walt Disney World for neglecting is its two water parks.
Even though Disney’s water parks are among the most-attended in the world, guests have to deal with frequent breakdowns at Blizzard Beach and a general lack of development at both water parks. However, in a rare bit of good news for Walt Disney World water park fans, documents were filed recently with the South Florida Water Management District that reveal that for the first time in over a decade, Disney is working on a brand new attraction for one of its water parks.
1. A new raft ride is on its way to Typhoon Lagoon
According to publicly available permits filed recently, a new family raft ride is in the planning phases for Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon water park. Based on what we can see above, it looks like this new ride will take the form of a family raft ride, and will also include an elevated flume element that should provide riders with an excellent view of the park below before taking them on a winding journey to the bottom of the slide.
This new, currently unannounced attraction is set to be built on two acres in the northern part of the water park, west of the current Crush 'n' Gusher water coaster raft ride (which was the park’s last new addition and opened in 2005). Currently, the spot shown in the permits is mostly vacant, but it does contain a backstage area used by Cast Members which will probably be relocated. However, the good news is that no current park attractions would be displaced by this new construction, and construction world will likely not impact park operations. And speaking of construction...
2. Construction and opening for this new attraction might be sooner than you think
Walt Disney World fans have unfortunately gotten used to lengthy construction timetables for pretty much every project at the resort, and its understandable for guests not to get super-excited at every new potential ride confirmed to be coming to Walt Disney World as they settle in for what is normally a multi-year wait from announcement to opening. However, water rides are very different from traditional theme park attractions, and are mostly fabricated off-site with a simple assembly at the park taking only a few months.
The most recent attraction built at a Disney water park, the aforementioned Crush 'n' Gusher, actually only took a few months itself to construct, with work on this slide beginning in October 2004 and the ride welcoming its first guests in March 2005, over a decade ago. If this new attraction's construction follows a similar pattern, we may be looking at an official announcement for this project sometime this summer and then a potential opening in either spring or summer of 2017.