On April 8, 2011 ground was broken for Shanghai Disney Resort, the future home of the Shanghai Disneyland Park. Since then, not a lot has been heard about the newest Magic Kingdom. According to the, Chinese officials yesterday however shared a few more details about the nuts and bolts of Shanghai Disneyland’s progress. Nothing was said about specific attractions or theming but that will come later.
Work has already begun on infrastructure improvements around the new resort. Already, almost $500 million have been spent readying the area with drainage systems, traffic accommodations/roads, and sightseeing structures. Once the basics for these have been completed, work will begin on the park. As the park is built work will continue on two new elevated roads connecting the area with two major highways and a metrolink as well. 30 tunneling machines are busy at work expanding the Shanghai’s subway system as well to accommodate future tourist travel. It is estimated that the subway lines will be expanded by nearly 500 miles. Lastly, work has also begun on what is basically a 10 kilometer moat around the entire resort area. Currently, a 5 kilometer portion of it is being worked on.
The overall budget for the area that will include the park, hotels, and other components of the resort is $4.6 billion.
Specifics have not been released about Shanghai Disneyland as of yet. While one sketch of an overall rough plan for Shanghai Disneyland has been released, officials say that bidding will begin shortly for a detailed design. It was not said who was in the running for this or how Disney Imagineering would be involved with this process.
Phase One of Shanghai Disney Resort is schedule to open in 2016. The site on which it is being built covers 963 acres. Upon opening in 2016 it will include Shanghai Disneyland Park, hotels, an entertainment district, recreational facilities, a lake, and all the parking and infrastructure facilities needed to accommodate them. Future phases of the resort could include two more theme parks within the Shanghai Disney Resort.
Shanghai, meaning “on the sea,” Shanghai has become a global city that has gained importance in culture, finance, media, technology, and more. It has the busiest container port in the world. It is only fitting that this growing center of influence would also have a Disney resort.