Disney World Construction Project Could Hint at New Hotel

A new construction project near the Magic Kingdom park at Walt Disney World could be the precursor for a major new addition to the resort. Recently, Disney filed a new construction permit for a planned re-route of Floridian Way, one of the major roads leading into the Magic Kingdom park. Notably, the construction project would open up space directly north of the Grand Floridian by rerouting Floridian Way around a parking lot used for the Grand Floridian. This re-route not only diverts traffic around the Grand Floridian, it also opens up a large swath of land north of the hotel and directly west of Magic Kingdom.

While the intended purpose of the Floridian Way is to improve traffic flow for the Magic Kingdom and the hotels that surround it, many Disney observers that the project also opens up some prime real estate right next to the Magic Kingdom. Based on its positioning, it would make sense that Disney is doing some long-term planning and prepping some ground for a future resort hotel. 

The original plans for Disney World called for several resort hotels to be built in addition to the Polynesian and Contemporary hotels. Early plans for Disney World included resorts with Thai and Venetian themes, which were cancelled due to an oil crisis in the 1970s. The land set aside for the Thai-themed hotel (called the Asian resort) was eventually replaced by the Grand Floridian, and the road leading through the site was renamed from Asian Way to Floridian Way. Disney Parks has toyed with the idea of opening several other hotel concepts at the Seven Seas Lagoon. Plans were drawn up for the Venetian-themed hotel several times, and a Persian-themed hotel was at one point set to be built near the Contemporary on the adjacent Bay Lake. 

Right now, there are 25 hotels on the Walt Disney World grounds. A twenty-sixth hotel, Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser, is set to open near Disney's Hollywood Studios in 2022. That hotel will provide guests with a unique and immersive two-day Star Wars experience.