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Rumor and Upcoming Timeline Tracker

Discussion in 'WDW Parks News, Rumors and Current Events' started by MisterPenguin, Apr 21, 2017.

  1. MisterPenguin

    MisterPenguin Premium Member

    Feb 9, 2016
    Likes Received:
    On July 17, 2017, shortly after the D23 2017 Expo, this rumor tracker had a lot of extraneous stuff that was confirmed and full of strike-throughs. It got a bit messy. So, I copied it to this post to serve as a historical document, and then pruned this down to current rumors.

    As always, please don't let this thread become a commentary on the rumors... just follow the links to the appropriate threads for discussion. If there are updates or questions about the rumors themselves, please post them to this thread.

    Upcoming events in timeline form, and fly-through of new and rumored construction can be found in the second post of this thread. [Link here]


    • Epcot is getting a major update that will have several phases that will run from 2017 to 2021+ [official]
      • more like running until 2023-2024
    • There is a push to include more IPs (Intellectual Properties) into Epcot [very strong]
    • Epcot is likely to get a 'new name'... but not much different... probably going with all caps and maybe some sort of prefix or suffix, e.g., Disney EPCOT, or EPCOT Center
    • Entrance / Central Spine
      • was once a 'Phase I' project to start in 2017, but now the Spine update is pushed back in timeline.[Done by Oct 2021]
      • In the interim: Sum of All Thrills in Innoventions may reopen. [here]
        • and... most likely not [here]
      • Expected changes. [here] [here] [here]
        • New entrance plaza and look with lack of turnstiles
        • Removal of legacy monoliths [and here]
        • Removal of "a few other key structures"
        • More landscaping and greenery
        • New look to what is currently known as Innoventions, with part of it demo'd and some new builds
        • New performance space
        • New fountain
      • concept art is blue sky and shouldn't be taken for definite plans, but, it's not drastically different than what's planned. [here] [artist's concept]
      • as a 'phase I' project likely to happen first: there will be a major renovation of the entrance and the central hub of Future World and Innoventions (and maybe the phrase 'Future World' and 'Innoventions' won't survive) [maybe starting 2017]. And say good bye to the memorials out front.
    • Future World pavilions:
    • World Showcase
      • the Ratatouille Ride as it exists in Paris has beat out the Beauty and the Beast ride as the new attraction for the French Pavilion. This is Greenlit. Its installation has been pushed sooner because GotG was pushed later. [confirmed at D23 2017] Opens in 2020, 1-2Q. Opens in 2020, 3Q [here]
        • the placement of the Rat ride would not necessitate any changes to IdF or any of France's restaurants or shops, however, that doesn't mean a separate decision could affect them, e.g, updated the IdF [here]
        • there is no demolition or connection through any of the existing France pavilion buildings... access is around the pavilion, not through it [here]
        • Some info on the original ride that might affect the new clone.
      • Brazil: there will be a possible new national pavilion, likely to be Brazil (2021?) (2022?) with possible attached attraction/ride [chance of an attached attraction down to more than likely not than likely]
        • original artist's concept of Brazil when first floated long ago... new renderings in the works. [here]
      • New National Pavilions
        • after Brazil, Spain is the next contender (a long shot) for a pavilion. [weak]

    Disney Hollywood Studios
    • Both Star Wars Lands will open in 2019 [official]
    • Toy Story Land in Hollywood Studio, currently being built
      • Opens "summer 2018" [confirmed at D23 2017]
      • The code word for TSL: Ascot (reference to Barbie's Ken's ascot)
      • wdwthemeparks on TSL
      • Some of the big props in Pixar Place are being removed and will reappear in TSL [very likely]
      • not likely to be a Phase 2 for TSL [here]
    • Tower of Terror will not get the Guardians of the Galaxy overlay that the one in Anaheim is getting [confirmed by Bob Chapek]
      • Reaffirmed: ToT will remain untouched by GotG [strong]
    • Mickey Ride {Mickey's and Minnie's Runaway Railway} replacing (not overlaying) the Great Movie Ride (2019, 3-4Q). Starting this August 13, 2017 [construction to start immediately]. Uses Mickey Shorts animation and 2 1/2D effects on an LPS vehicle. [confirmed at D23 2017]
    • Star Tours
      • Star Tours will get a scene from Ep. 8, planet of Crait [official]
      • Star Tours will get a scene from Ep. 9 in 2019 and still be around for a year or two after that [strong]
      • Star Tours eventually reconfigured for some other IP after SWL opens
    • Muppet Courtyard:
      • Mama Melrose: Status unknown. Stay as is or get a Muppet theme?
      • Muppet Theater exterior and Muppet Square get a refresh [very strong]
      • Muppet Theater might be used in the future as a preview theater [here]
      • Muppet fountain to be restored as a fountain once off stage infrastructure is done. [likely]
    • Grand Avenue
      • Maybe a streetmosphere show where the Muppets heckle the crowds waiting to get into Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge [Jim Hill rumor]
    • Echo Lake area is safe for now. [likely]
    • Drive-in and Commissary safe for now [likely]
    • Shows:
      • Fantasmic!
      • Indy is safe for now. [likely]
      • Mermaid, Beauty... are all long running shows and plans were made for replacements but then delayed. Will they ever be updated with, e.g., the Aladdin show that was in Anaheim or the Tangled show that's on the cruise ships?
      • The Theater of the Stars where Beauty and the Best plays is also talked about as being changed: demo'd for something new or possibly enclosed [and here]
      • Little Mermaid could be replaced when TSL opens in 2018. Launch Bay changed in 2019 or even sooner. Disney Jr. is safe. [likely]
      • Of these four: Voyage of the Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast Stage Show, Fantasmic, and Indiana Jones Stunt Show; expect 1 to be changed in 2018, another by 2019, and the other 2 refreshed by 2021. Also expect a new show in a new-ish location. [here]
    • The rumored "Phase 3" is not going to be another land, but instead, updates like the Mickey ride; however, there once was talk of "2 new areas" in the planning stages which are now off the table
    • A possible new boat ride
    • Hollywood Studios is still getting an unknown name change, but that seems to be held off until the new Lands are completed. What an adventure!
    • wdwthemeparks on DHS

    Magic Kingdom
    • Night Time Parade status
    • Magic Kingdom 50th Anniversary (2021)
      • there will be an eventual replacement for "Happily Ever After" (which replaced "Wishes")
        • although... there may be rumblings that since HEA was so well received, they might just update and upgrade it instead of a brand new show. [here]
      • Have something new in each park by the 50th other than the stuff already publicly announced
      • Frontierland refresh was associated with 50th celebration, but seems to be back-burnered
      • "50 Things" marketing campaign will take place to list 50 new things added to the parks in celebration of the 50th
    • Adventureland
      • Tiki Room: a possible contender of multiple plans is to replace Tiki Room with something else. Multiple sources say such a plan, along with others, exists [strong]
      • wdwthemeparks on Moana coming to Adventureland
      • Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson will star in a Jungle Cruise movie. He posted on instagram that "we'll partner with Disney's brilliant Imagineers to help re-engineer and re-design the #JungleCruise ride in all the Disney theme parks around the world." Orlando Sentinel says Disney says there is no plan to revamp the ride.
      • Fire Mountain Rumor: A volcano for Adventureland was once on the drawing board a long time ago, the rumor it's back on the table as a possibility has recently been revived.
    • Main Street
      • A new theater "off of Main Street" to be added. Likely to be in the employee parking lot next to Main Street bypass [here] (which is likely to make the bypass fully themed and open all or most of the time) [announced at D23 2017]
        • potential map of theater placement [here]
        • opening summer/fall of 2020 [here]
        • not sure if theater bypass will be regularly accessible or just for the theater [here]
        • may be that access will be (only?) through Center Street [here]
      • Trolley Show: From now on three musical sets: 1. The standard set that will go from January to August; 2. Fall set; and, 3. Holiday set. However, costuming and times of transitions will follow Mickey's Royal Faire seasonal endings. [strong]
    • Haunted Mansion restaurant. [one source, likely?]
    • Liberty to Frontier
    • Tomorrowland refresh: while nothing has the full plan hasn't been announced, this is definitely happening since it has already started with paint jobs and the seasonal closure of Stitch. However, the plans have not been finalized and there are several contenders, and so, competing ideas keep getting leaked...
      • We've already seen the boulders and Carousel of Progress get a new paint job... so they're staying. And the paint job is a hint of what's to come, as well as the new Joffrey's. And rocks will be getting new lighting, like Space Mountain recently received.
      • We've already seen Stitch's Great Escape go into seasonal mode. It was going to be a Wreck It Ralph ride (like Minions/Simpson in Universal), but that is nixed. Some other IP is going there. (by 2019? 2020?)
      • TRON Coaster has been announced at D23 Expo 2017
        • Expected to be completed Spring 2021 [here]
        • Tron is going behind the Speedway and not replacing it. [Here.] [Map.]
        • Artist rendering show Speedway staying and train going through TRON, however, that shouldn't be taken as exact. Speedway gets a new theme and train's path will be accounted for. [here] [artist rendering here]
        • Tron will get a small exit shop. [here]
        • internet rumors that TRON will lose it's covering thanks to accountant bean-counting probably aren't true. [here and here and here]
      • Speedway is getting an overhaul. [Here.]
      • Space Mountain
        • As part of the TRON Coaster and Speedway work, Tomorrowland Power and Light (SM Gift Shop) will get a minor overhaul [here]
      • other stuff: Insiders hint that there are several other significant changes coming, but won't say what so as to protect their sources.
      • There will be 2-3 new rides [likely]
      • Carousel of Progress is getting a refurb, most likely updating final scene and reskinning the AAs [likely]
      • A name change for Tomorrowland? Discovery Land?

    Animal Kingdom
    • Tree of Life Awakening vignettes will start to be shown on the back side of the ToL starting in May 2017. [orlandoparknews]
    • Pandora: An extra attraction and a full sit-down restaurant a possible addition [here] [updated]
    • Northern Project: Some long term proposal to make use of the land north of Kali and south of Conservation Station. [here]
      • Something within a decade [here]
      • a 'northern project' sometime mid next decade [here]
    • Dinoland USA Changes
      • This is all blue-sky at the moment [here]
      • Keeping Dinosaur Theme
        • whatever will replace Dinorama has a theme that befits Dinoland [here]
        • only thing planned is replacing Dinorama with a coaster [here]
      • Adding Indiana Jones and Getting Rid of Dinosaurs
        • Indiana Jones may be coming to AK, especially Dinoland, which would replace Dinosaur them [here]
        • The Indy proposal wouldn't happen until after 2023, if at all, an Indy may yet go to some other place/park [here]
        • Or... it could be done by 2021 [here]
        • a full re-do of the land [here] and
          • Dinosaur rethemed to Indiana Jones, but not 100% same as the one in Disneyland
            • Indiana Jones ride in DL and Tokyo are the same ride with different settings, so, a new one for AK could be tweaked to fit in [here]
            • new(er) SFX for an Indy conversion [here]
          • Primeval Whirl and Triceratops Spin replaced by an E Ticket, potentially water ride
          • light retheming of dig site
          • potential 3rd attraction
            • maybe a coaster? [here]
            • is it the abandoned proposal "Excavator Coaster"? [thread here]
              • could be, but not necessarily [here]
              • but sounds like it [here] [here]
            • maybe this mini-Indy Land is meant for DHS? [here]
      • Getting Rid of Dinosaur Theme
        • Dinoland will be a thing of the past [here] [here]
      • Primeval Whirl may be gone in a year or two [here]
    • A new non-Gondola and non-bus way to link AKL with AK in in the works (years away)
      • Could also link in Disney Springs and elsewhere [here] [here]
    • Rivers of Light

    • Designation of Value, Moderate, and Deluxe being done away with. Rooms priced as the market will bear. Multiple criteria will be considered in pricing: closeness to a park, size of room, theming, amenities, etc.... Computer searching for price range replaces cost tiers.
    • Tower being built in Coronado Springs. High end / business suites. Top story viewing-restaurant. Room refurbs, landscaping update. [official] [discussion thread]
    • Caribbean Beach Resort Area
      • Centertown update with more retail and dining. [official]
      • DVC for Caribbean called "Riviera" (deluxe, not moderate). To open in fall of 2019. [info here] [confirmed at D23 2017]
      • Grainy overview of Riviera lay out here.
    • Area south of the CBR gondola station is a prime location for a new resort [here]
    • Whole bunch of rumored new projects, most of them DVC. Some bantered about:
      • A Star Wars theme hotel with a two-night interactive component [strong, corroborated by official survey about such a resort] [confirmed at D23 2017]
        • live, interactive, in-character CMs will likely be new characters and not known (e.g., no Han Solo). [here]
        • early and rough guesses at cost: here.
      • Brand new resort complexes in the area of Epcot entrance (not Crescent Lake), four in the running [likely] [and again]
      • Swolphin tower on Fantasia Gardens tennis court with cabanas turned into more parking (but the miniature golf being more or less left alone) [see here and following]
        • it will be some brand of Marriott, a rumor of a Kessler Collection Tower is being denied by a Kessler spokesperson [here]
      • Maybe a super-deluxe [here]
      • Another tower for Contemporary [weak]
      • Another resort near Poly and Shades of Green [very weak]

    In General / Park Wide
    • Club 33 coming to WDW parks
    • More S.E.A. (Society for Explorers and Adventurers) backstory to be added to new attractions. New rides/venues should be coming that incorporate the S.E.A. story more
      • a recent example: Miss Adventure Falls family raft flume that opened in spring of 2017
    • Gondola Lift!
      • This is verified by around 5 insiders, permits, the beginning of construction, and documents obtained by the Orlando Sentinel. [confirmed at D23 2017]
      • To open March to October 2019 [here]
      • It will connect POP/AoA and Caribbean with DHS/Epcot. And likely raise the prices there.
      • Possible I.D. of the gondola make and model here.
      • Can gondolas handle wheelchairs, strollers, and EVC? Yes, here.
      • Will it be installed in other places? No plans right now, but, always a possibility if it works out well.
      • All the gondola stations will be ground level with a steep incline coming in/out [here]
      • gondolas stations will be themed to nearby architecture: International Gateway will be Parisian; DHS will be Art Deco; AoA/Pop will be a Wave (near Little Mermaid); CBR Stations will be regal and stoney (which is which isn't confirmed). [here]
      • The AoA station will be enclosed. CBR station will be ground level. Storage area at CBR will be west side of the station. [here]
      • The CBR station will be accessible by foot and internal bus loop at CBR [here]
      • gondolas will be 8 person cabins from Doppelmayr, have a through-put of 5,000 people per hour, have wi-fi, and ample passive ventilation [here]
      • wdwthemeparks on the Gondola Lift
    • Not Gondolas!
    • Monorail: Now that the automation has been completed, expect upgrades to the vehicles [strong] which includes being flush to the loading platform for easier load of vehicles [strong]
    • Disney live entertainment restructured for more local control.
    • Cryptic clue: Maybe there will be something built immediately behind World Showcase (American, Japan, France), or, the gondola system is set up for expansion, or, something... [here]
    • Almost everything that will open in time for MK's 50th (Oct 2021) has been officially announced. [here]
    • How WDW determines how late they'll be open to [here]
    • What does a SVP-Commercial Strategy and Chief Revenue Officer do? [here]
    • Joe Rohde and the mystery of Bali [here]

    Disney Springs
    • DisneyQuest is finally closing down on July 3, 2017 to be replaced with the NBA Experience. This will entail a complete demolition of DQ. [official]
    • 3rd Parking Garage going up in employee lot across the street by the Speedway. Construction started. [official]
    • La Nouba the Cirque show at the Cirque 'tent' is ending at the end of 2017. A new Cirque show will take its place requiring the theater to go dark during its refurbishment and renovation. [official]
      • During this time, a big top tent may go up behind the Cirque theater for a temporary Cirque show. [likely]
      • Then when done, a 4th garage go up in that site. [weak]
    • LED lights in the 'springs' will provide colored mood lighting [likely] and even put on a lite light show [weak]
    • Beginning fall 2017 or early 2018, Marketplace shops will be refurbed to bring them up to DS level (like Planet Hollywood and Fulton Crab House had to upgrade). [weak]
      • Or maybe not so weak. [here]
    • The Edison's opening is moved again, to Late 2017. It is unknown if "Walt's" or a rumored underground tunnel guest area (maybe a speakeasy) is still in the works. Thread here.
    • Uniqlo hems. As does Levi's store.
    • As of April 24, 2017, rumors are that Bongos and Wolfgang Puck (the restaurant, and not the QS) will be replaced by some other restaurant(s).

    Disneyland / CA
    • The area around GotG:MB (which was rumored to be a new Marvel Land) recently got a budget cut. [strong]
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2017
    Oddysey, Wespionage, clemmo and 169 others like this.
  2. MisterPenguin

    MisterPenguin Original Poster Premium Member

    Feb 9, 2016
    Likes Received:


    EP: August: Mission Space update
    EP: August: Universe of Energy closes for GotG ride
    EP: Sum of All Thrills Reopens (?)
    HS: August: TGMR closes for Mickey's and Minnie's Runaway Railroad
    HS: December: Star Tours gets new scene from Ep. 8
    MK: will Hall of Presidents ever reopen?
    MK: Aug 28 - Nov 16: Splash Mountain refurb (back of stage infrastructure stuff)
    MK: Stitch in perpetual seasonal mode awaiting for a decision for a replacement
    DS: December: La Nouba closes / Edison opens?


    HS: Memorial Day likely: Toy Story Land opens
    HS: Little Mermaid show replaced... maybe


    EP: Space Restaurant opens
    EP: Spaceship Earth gets a regular refurb
    EP: late in year: Gran Fiesta closes for a Coco overhaul
    EP: fall: Riviera DVC opens
    HS: fall: SW:GE opens
    HS: fall: Mickey's and Minnie's Runaway Railroad opens
    HS: December: Star Tours gets new scene from Ep. 9
    HS: one of these likely to be replaced: Beauty and the Beast Stage Show, or, Indiana Jones Stunt Show
    WDW: 2nd/3rd Quarter: Skyline (gondola lift) opens


    EP: 3rd Quarter: Rat Ride
    EP: Coco overhaul opens at Mexico pavilion
    EP: Innoventions overhaul (most likely demo'd)
    EP: Illuminations next version
    MK: new theater behind Main Street opens
    MK: Big Thunder Mountain finally gets the SFX that the DL version has

    EP: Spring: Guardians of the Universe of Energy opens
    EP: Spine renovation
    EP: some sort of UK Ride
    EP: Brazil pavilion opens, or 2022
    EP: Nothing happening in Wonders of Life until maybe at this time or later
    HS: two of these likely to be refreshed: Beauty and the Beast Stage Show, Indiana Jones Stunt Show
    MK: 50th Anniversary
    MK: New Night Time Parade
    MK: spring: new TRON Bike coaster (keeps covering over outdoor section)
    MK: Speedway overhaul done (likely a TRON theme)


    EP: 40th Anniversary
    EP: Maybe an Imagination renovation, or 2023


    EP: thee new national pavilions by then... maybe
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2017
  3. Princess Leia

    Princess Leia Well-Known Member

    Jun 17, 2016
    Likes Received:
  4. Kman101

    Kman101 Premium Member

    Apr 10, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Fantastic! Thank you for doing this :)
  5. Nemo14

    Nemo14 Well-Known Member

    Mar 22, 2005
    Likes Received:
    Nice to have this all in one place. Thanks for doing this!
  6. Coaster Lover

    Coaster Lover Well-Known Member

    Mar 1, 2015
    Likes Received:
    Love having "Table of Contents" threads like this... makes keeping up with all these new and rumors much easier! Thank you for all your work!
  7. wdwgreek

    wdwgreek Well-Known Member

    Mar 21, 2013
    Likes Received:
    Very very well done! A complete and accurate rendition of where we are right now! While I would love to see some non-IP related stuff on that list, all and all very impressive list of projects!
    MisterPenguin, larryz and epcot82fan like this.
  8. steffib

    steffib Member

    Jul 11, 2015
    Likes Received:
    this is great, thanks for doing must have taken you a long time!
    MisterPenguin, larryz and epcot82fan like this.
  9. jt04

    jt04 Well-Known Member

    Jul 27, 2004
    Likes Received:
    Don't forget about potential parking garages. Priorities Mr Penguin, priorities.
    egg likes this.
  10. ryguy

    ryguy Well-Known Member

    Feb 13, 2006
    Likes Received:
    Thanks for your time in compiling this list!
    MisterPenguin, larryz and epcot82fan like this.
  11. michael.fumc

    michael.fumc Well-Known Member

    Jan 19, 2011
    Likes Received:
    Great job!!!! Thank you this is really amazing!
    MisterPenguin, larryz and epcot82fan like this.
  12. Bandit03

    Bandit03 New Member

    Oct 20, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Thank you for summarizing this!
    MisterPenguin, larryz and epcot82fan like this.
  13. Kylo Ken

    Kylo Ken Local Idiot Premium Member

    Jun 8, 2016
    Likes Received:
    Stellar job out of you for doing this. STELLAR! Thank you for this :)
    MisterPenguin, larryz and epcot82fan like this.
  14. FigmentFan3

    FigmentFan3 Well-Known Member

    Mar 23, 2013
    Likes Received:
    Hats off, indeed!
    MisterPenguin, larryz and epcot82fan like this.
  15. jaques21

    jaques21 Active Member

    Jul 11, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Great Job! reading stuff like this makes me happy!:joyfull:
    MisterPenguin, larryz and epcot82fan like this.
  16. epcot82fan

    epcot82fan EPCOT Center Purist

    Aug 23, 2016
    Likes Received:
    Thank you for making this @MisterPenguin !! Great to have one place to see everything together! @wdwmagic , Could we pin this?
    MisterPenguin, larryz and JenniferS like this.
  17. epcot82fan

    epcot82fan EPCOT Center Purist

    Aug 23, 2016
    Likes Received:
    Did you see @MisterPenguin 's second post?
    Prince Thomas likes this.
  18. CaptainAmerica

    CaptainAmerica Well-Known Member

    Jan 28, 2015
    Likes Received:
    @MisterPenguin a few suggestions. Your Epcot headline says 2017 - 2020 but many of the projects under it say 2021. There's also been chatter about Moana moving to the Magic Kingdom.
    jt04 likes this.
  19. disneygeek90

    disneygeek90 Well-Known Member

    Nov 3, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Thank you! This is wonderful. Will you be editing the OP when new info arises? It's so hard for me to track down new insider info when it's on page 90/105.
  20. Rsj88

    Rsj88 Active Member

    Feb 17, 2016
    Likes Received:
    Thank you!!!
    larryz likes this.

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