Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Disney Re-Announces Magic Kingdom's Fantasyland Expansion

Walt Disney World is having a special press meeting this evening to re-announced their Fantasyland expansion, which will open in phases starting in 2012.  Details and photos have already been leaked out by the press, and it looks as though some big changes have been made to the area since originally announced in 2009.

Here is a comparison of the overall area, with the new version on top and the 2009 version on the bottom:

There are still a lot of things that are the same - the Little Mermaid ride and Beauty and the Beast restaurants, as well as the double Dumbo rides, but there are also substantial changes.  For one the Cinderella and Aurora buildings have been replaced with a Snow White themed coaster that has a unique "swinging" vehicles.

This change likely was the result of the efforts to make the expansion appeal to a wider audience, and not just those interested in the Disney Princesses.  The Barnstormer family coaster will now be rethemed around Goofy's adventures.  It looks like the Snow White dark ride will become a piece of history as it will be replaced by a central Princess meeting area, and the Tinkerbell area is gone completely.

Once more details and higher quality art come out we'll see what else has changed.  I like the new Snow White coaster... first because it is a coaster, but it'll add a lot of energy to the new area with the trains zooming around.  Much better than the elaborate Princess meeting area planned for its spot before.