D23 Expo 2017 was full of Disney Parks & Resorts announcements. If you missed it, you can listen to the Parks Panel Here. With those announcements came lots of concept art and general statements. Statements like: “a Ratatouille inspired attraction will be coming to the France Pavilion, similar to the attraction that opened at Disneyland Paris in 2014.” That’s all we have to go on? That statement and the concept art below? Well that all changed recently with the application for work permits by Reddy Creek Improvement District.
Let’s take a look at some “Before” images first. This is a picture I took from World Showcase and a screen shot from google Earth – both from 2017.
Here is the same Google Earth image with some labels, noting most of the space between France and Morocco was being used for “Festival” Kiosk storage – interesting.
Now let’s look at the map that was submitted with the permit application. This shows the full scope of the France expansion, the buildings, the landscaping, retention ponds, back stage areas and general infrastructure needed. (These work permits were submitted to South Florida Water Management)
It’s interesting to note that the plans include a restroom, similar to the plans submitted to South Florida Water for Norway a few years back – interesting that water permits are the source of so much additional detail.
Now let’s overlay both of those images. The full plan and the Google Earth image..
The images fit together like a glove, confirming that the existing theater and bakery will not be impacted by the new construction. The image also shows just how extensive this expansion is covering the area all around France, the area between France and Morocco and land behind Morocco.
While that’s impressive, let’s peel back a little and only look at the new building that are being constructed (queue, extended queue, restroom and attraction building itself)..
That overlay represents what you will see after the construction walls come down. It gives us a great idea of the size. The footprint of the attraction is about the same size as the American Adventure. Let me add some labels for clarity, at least what I think is clarity and just for fun, I’ll add in the approximate path and location of the yet to be constructed Disney Skyliner.
A few interesting things:
- Queues, Queues and more Queues. While I’m sure some are fast pass vs standby and some have interactive elements, this attraction is set to consume people, and prepared for some long wait times.
- Where is the entrance? What I think is the front door, doesn’t align with the original concept art exactly. It appears that the very top of the image shows an opening that could be used as the door – placing it to the right of the existing building. Or that could just be the end of a long switch back that starts in the center. The image I created below shows the entrance at the front right of the pavilion. I could be completely wrong, but love to speculate.
- Where is the exit? Of course, the exit is at the gift shop, but it’s not clear if that’s the existing gift shop or new construction? With the new restrooms the two existing “Toilettes” could be removed providing space for the exit to flow into the existing bakery and gift shop. Maybe? But that would create a lot of congestion, unless the entrance is indeed outside to the right.
- The Disney Skyliner is going to pass close to the new attraction building, so we can expect theming all around the new construction, not just the front.
- Restroom – Thank you Disney, an improved restroom in France is much needed. The two existing “Toilettes” – as in two singular shared gender stalls just aren’t enough.
So my guess is that the entrance to the new attraction will be on the right side as you face the pavilion, but – I could be completely wrong. Regardless, this will be a wonderful addition to Epcot and a perfect reason to re-visit Walt Disney World during the 50th Anniversary Celebration in 2021.
If I missed something please comment below!
Now… What about that Guardians of the Galaxy thing in Future World? I’ll save that for next time!