Downtown Disney Construction Update May 2015

| May 9, 2015 | 12 Replies

I thought I would update everyone on several new changes with the Downtown Disney in Walt Disney World construction.  They have moved the traffic to the new side of the roadway if you are coming from the resorts. Just be prepared to take a little extra time going through this area.

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They have changed how you enter the parking garage if you are on Buena Vista Drive.  You used to be able to make a left at the light by Team Disney but you can’t do that anymore. If you want to enter the parking garage you will need to use the entrance by Cirque du Soleil and go through part of the old parking lot and enter that way. If you are coming towards the parking garage from Hotel Plaza Boulevard you can make the right turn that will take you into the garage. PS: by the way, I wasn’t driving when these pictures were taken. They are installing 2 pedestrian walkways over the roadway at Buena Vista Drive and Hotel Plaza Boulevard May 11, 12 and May 19, 20, 2015 in the overnight hours from 12 AM to 7AM. You should take an alternate route or allow plenty of extra time to get through this area.

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If you drive by landmarks like I do, be prepared for a change. The Downtown Disney I knew and loved hardly looks anything like it did before. In fact as we drove by I totally missed that we had driven by the backside of the World of Disney store.  I always liked the lush landscaping as you entered Typhoon Lagoon. It doesn’t look like that now. Hopefully when the construction is done they will add more landscaping.  You didn’t used to be able to see I-4 from WDW but you sure can now.

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Looking out at the construction, you can see lots of progress is being made. You can’t recognize where anything used to be. This is the former entrance by the World of Disney store.

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In good news, they have opened the Orange parking garage connector. Before they had you walking down makeshift walkways and along construction walls to get in and out of the garage. This is a big improvement.  You take the bridge on Level 2. There are 4 elevators on the ground level, as well as stairs and escalators up to level 2 if you are coming from Downtown Disney. The music in this area is very catchy. I enjoyed watching the people dancing through this area.  One gentleman was dancing to a disco song and his grandkids were just staring at him.  I wouldn’t mind just sitting here and watching the crowds.

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So you can see improvements are being made but they still have a way to go to finish Disney Springs. I still think you can enjoy the area in spite of the construction so don’t be afraid to visit.

In follow up news from last week, I went over to Disney’s Hollywood Studios for the second week of testing with the Express Order app. This week they are testing delivering your order directly to your table. We submitted our order as we entered Backlot Express. About 5 minutes later our food order was delivered to the table.  The order was correct and it was hot. This was great and allowed us to escape the crowds inside. I hope with a few refinements you will be able to do this at more locations across Walt Disney World. It was very easy paying with Apple Pay but for resort guests it will be great when the Disney Dining plan is accepted.

‘Til next time, See you in the parks!



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Category: Disney World

  • Jack Burgin

    It is hard to comprehend how all the changes to Downton Disney will ultimately look but I always enjoy seeing Kathy’s updates.

  • Snaked

    Thanks for the update but my god this is progressing as a snail pace.
    Did I see something that looked like the start of the next parking garage? That one will be useble in 18 month and ready after +2 years and with all due respect but I don’t see why it had to take that long, it’s not that impressive.

  • pat

    Thanks Kathy. It looks massive. Do you know what they are building or is it all just for parking? As always, love your frequent updates.

    • Kathy Werling

      They are adding more stores and another park garage.

  • tjodan

    Ew – looks horrid – they have ruined the place in more ways than one.

  • stadalberts

    Aren’t they building a bridge so that cars can come in directly from rt. 4 and go right to the parking garage?

    • Kathy Werling

      Yes they are building a ramp off I-4 that will go directly to the garage.

      • stadalberts

        Thanks Kathy, that’s what I thought. Can you imagine the amount of people THAT will bring to DTD?

  • richh19191

    We were recently there, vacation at Disney at least one time a year, downtown disney will be beautiful no doubt. The main problem will only get worse, that is the crowds, the footprint of the area will not change much (area) the influx of people will be exponentially greater, this will not be one area to spend your time unfortunately, unless you enjoy bumper to bumper people.

  • Karen

    With progress, comes change and change is not always easy, even for those of us far away from our beloved WDW. Thank you, beyond words, KW, for keeping us ” in the know”. It is through you that I can adjust to these changes, bit by bit, as sad as some of it is to give up what we know and feel comfortable with. We must move forward to accommodate the masses that will keep WDW always growing.

  • Sabrina Fair

    Thanks, Kathy. ALWAYS enjoy you’re pictures and input! And your dedication!

  • barbaramarlin

    Thanks for sharing such a wonderful pictures of Disney. I’m just looking forward to how these whole place will look like after it is completed.