Disneyland Resort Update: Parking, Plans, and Pixar Pier

Disneyland Resort, Anaheim, CA

Hey guyyyyys, we're back at it again with a look at stuff that's going on at the Disneyland Resort.  If you missed our Disneyland update yesterday, you can find it right here.  Today, we're hitting up the rest of the Resort to look at current and future work to come, so lets dive in, shall we?

"Pinocchio Parking Structure" Construction

We start off with our exclusive and award winning* coverage of the new parking structure that is being constructed right next to the Mickey and Friends Parking Structure on the west side of the Resort.  As many can guess, with next year's opening of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge coming up fast, there will be a significant increase in crowds and a need to handle that extra capacity.  This 6500-vehicle structure try to handle that (though I wonder what it's impact on traffic will be when that many more people are leaving the Resort area during peak nights), and the construction crews have been busy clearing land galore to prep for actual vertical construction.

No noodles have appeared on site quite yet (sorry, Guy Selga, we know you've been in morning since noods stopped appearing at "Star Wars" Land), but pretty much everything outside of the Mickey and Friends escalator landing and tram unloading area has been reduced to soil.  There's been some more rough grading near the center of the site.  The next step will be to start digging down to form the foundations that will ultimate support this giant parking garage.  But for now, you can engage in Westcoaster's fourth favorite pastime: staring at dirt.

* (No awards actually won.)

Downtown Disney 

Amongst the numerous improvements being made at the Downtown Disney district, a new "Four Diamond hotel" will soon be rising up adjacent to the Disneyland Hotel.  Granted, soon means opening in 2021, but working backwards means that construction will actually begin in summer of this year.  And recently, Disneyland confirmed several properties closing down to make way for this new hospitality anchor to the west side of Downtown Disney.

ESPN Zone, the AMC Theaters, Earl of Sandwich, Disney Vacation Club, Starbucks, and Rainforest Cafe will also close down this June to allow for land to be cleared for the new hotel.  Nothing has started yet, but the scenes below are numbered.

Meanwhile, construction continues on the Black Taps and Ballast Point coming to the center of Downtown Disney.  The exterior facade has been primed for new paint, and a few more banner stanchions have been installed.  Most of the work is going on inside, behind the doors and windows, of course.  But it's nice to see some exterior semblance of progress too.

Pixar Pier

Although Pixar Fest begins next Friday, April 13, Pixar Pier will not open until Friday, June 23.  There is plenty of work to do, as crews race to repaint Mickey's Fun Wheel, remodel the old Paradise Pier boardwalk games, convert California Screamin' into the Incredicoaster, transform Ariel's Grotto and Cove Bar into the Lamplight Lounge, and change up the other stores and food stands along the backside of Paradise Pier. 

This week saw more progress at the future Lamplight Lounge, plus new framing for the reconfigured station of the Incredicoaster.  The roller coaster itself is also gaining more tunnels to enhance the storyline of the Incredibles family chasing after Jack Jack, who's gotten loose and is innocently wrecking a bit of havoc with his newfound superpowers.  The Imagineers have promised more media and effects on the popular roller coaster when it reopens, and though the whole notion of forcing an IP upon a perfectly good theme land still feels unnecessary, chances are that--similar to the Guardians of the Galaxy - Mission: Breakout! transformation--the ride itself will be plenty of fun.

A Premature Retrospective to A Bug's Land

In other future Resort news, Walt Disney also recently formally announced the transformation of Hollywood Land into a new Marvel Land.  Part of this involves annexing A Bug's Land like it was 1940s Poland (Hail Hydra?), so lets take a moment to look at what we'll be losing.  It's Tough to be a Bug has already closed down for refurbishment into a future Marvel attraction, and the rest of the land will go down at the end of the summer.

First off, some ambient music...

There we go.

And that wraps up this week from the Disneyland Resort.  It's a broken record, but there is so much work going on these days that it feels ridiculous.  But I guess that keeps us busy trying to cover everything!

Poo pah!

Architect. Photographer. Disney nerd. Haunt enthusiast. Travel bugged. Concert fiend. Asian.