With so many theme park projects now officially cancelled, delayed or slimmed down it is a breath of fresh air when we get to see some construction photos of a project that is being worked on. You feel as if you can start allowing yourself to get excited.
Although many projects have been postponed to 2021 or beyond, if there are workers working, there is hope that current proposed dates may be brought forward. We never know exactly what Disney or Universal have planned and in the COVID-19 world we are currently living in, anything can surely happen and we are certainly due some good news.
Epcot's new "Play" pavilion has been in the works for some time, and was originally planned to be open for the 50th anniversary celebrations in 2021. Due to the interrupted construction work and current situation regarding COVID-19 we still don't have an official date as to when this project will be completed and ready for guests to begin experiencing it, with assumptions that 2022 now may be a more realistic opening date.
With the originally planned character interactions being a focus of this project it will be interesting to see how Disney will adapt this to adhere to the current health and safety measures that are in place due to COVID-19.
The Play Pavillion will be located in the former Wonders of Life building, which for over a decade was used as a Festival Center. When it finally opens, guests should be in for an amazing experience with Zach Riddley, portfolio executive, Walt Disney Imagineering saying about this new "Play" pavilion:
“This innovative, new pavilion is beyond anything we’ve ever created and is completely unique to Epcot. Built on the power of play, it introduces an immersive and interactive ‘city’ where you can explore, create, and interact with some of your favorite Disney characters. This is an experience worthy of our bold vision for Epcot – and another signature element of our transformation.”
It is encouraging to see that construction work appears to be taking place on the outside of the building, and new construction photos as well as a video update, have been posted to mousesteps. We will keep you posted on all the official announcements from Disney on this exciting new project.
Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind
Within the photo update and in this update there are photos of workers on the roof of this attraction. Another headlining attraction that was originally supposed to be opening in time for Walt Disney World's 50th anniversary celebrations was Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind. This attraction is very far along in development, with construction on this first-of-its kind roller coaster entering its final phases, however they are rumors that this will also be postponed to 2022.
This attraction will be added to Epcot's Future World and will be an indoor roller coaster that will re-purpose much of the original Universe of Energy building, as well as a giant new structure that is currently under construction behind this area, that will be big enough to house FOUR Spaceship Earth structures.
Disney has developed a new ride system for this attraction that will feature elevated roller coaster trains that conceal track underneath, and can also move independently, spinning around 360 degrees to face screens or set pieces, similar to the roller coaster trains used by Universal's Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts attraction. Another feature will be a backwards launch - a first for a Disney coaster.
Construction has been back up and running on this project since July which is good news and this is definitely an attraction that should get guests super excited about riding when it opens in the future.