Do you sometimes catch yourself walking by a venue at Walt Disney World wondering why it’s no longer used or what it is used for? I know I do. I’ve even gone up to Cast Members in the past and asked “Why is this space empty and what was inside?”
With the price of admission rising at least once or sometimes twice a year at Disney World we can often walk by empty spaces wishing for an additional experience to occupy it. These empty spaces often mean increased wait times at other attractions.
In certain cases some of these empty spaces are utilized for seasonal events, special event gift shops, or one-time experiences. You never know when Disney may occupy one of these venues when space is required for a temporary event or experience.
Let’s take a look at 5 spaces at Walt Disney World that have been either left for dead or used on an occasional basis for special events.
Number 5 – The Open Land at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Disney World’s largest theme park isn’t without its gaps and spaces. Large chunks of unused land sit between Rafiki’s Planet Watch, Africa, and Asia. In fact, some speculated Avatarland would be built in this unused space before it was announced it would replace Camp Minnie-Mickey. Until a new land or new attractions are added the unused land will remain empty.
Number 4 – The Odyssey – EPCOT
Once a quick service restaurant with a character show, The Odyssey now hosts corporate and guest special events on occasion. It’s also been known to hold Cast Member celebrations inside. A good portion of the year this space sits empty. Guests who pass by often wonder what is inside with an inquisitive face. Attached to this building is EPCOT’s first aid station and baby care center.
Number 3 – Streets of America – Disney’s Hollywood Studios
For 2 months out of the year this long street with great facades bustles with the best Christmas light show in America. For the other 10 months of the year it’s just a long street with movie facades and background noise. Love it or hate it, this space takes up valuable real estate inside Disney World’s smallest theme park with little to no guest interaction.
Number 2 – Sound Stage 1 Hot Set – Disney’s Hollywood Studios
This large open, indoor space sits at the end of Pixar Place. It’s been rumored for years to be the home of a new Monster’s Inc. attraction. However, the only monster inside has been the ghosts who haunt this empty space most of the year. Currently, this space is the temporary home to Wandering Oaken’s Trading Post for the Frozen Summer Fun event at Hollywood Studios. It is also used as a gift shop for Star Wars Weekends merchandise.
Number 1 – The Wonders of Life Pavilion – EPCOT
Once my favorite space in all of Walt Disney World it’s now an empty domed building only used seasonally as the festival center for EPCOT’s Flower & Garden and Food & Wine Festivals. It was once home to a myriad of human body related attractions like Body Wars, The Making of Me, Goofy about Health, and much more. It sits on a prime piece of EPCOT real estate towards the front of Future World East.
With crowd levels continuing to grow at Walt Disney World it would be beneficial to all guests for Disney to put these spaces to a more permanent use. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nice that they are used on a temporary basis, but these spaces sit on prime sections of the theme parks.
Since these spaces have only been used for temporary purposes for so long it would seem Disney has decided to keep it that way. We can only hope, one day, these spaces will be transformed into permanent attractions and experiences that fit the theme of the park or land they reside in.
What are some of your most underutilized spaces at Walt Disney World? Do you ever walk by a space or venue and wonder what it is used for or wish it would be transformed into a new attraction? Please let us know in the comments section below or on our official Facebook page.
Walt Disney once said “Disneyland will never be completed. It will continue to grow as long as there is imagination left in the world.” I’m sure he would have felt the same way about Walt Disney World. Let’s hope Disney utilizes these spaces again someday and they come to life with amazing attractions for all guests to enjoy.
Friend Aaron on Facebook: I accept reader friend requests.
Category: Disney World