Disney Proposes $1.9 Billion Expansion of Disneyland Theme Park in Anaheim, California

by Hayden Spiess

Anaheim, Calif. — The Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) has proposed a $1.9 billion expansion of its Disneyland Resort and surrounding neighborhood in Anaheim, south of Los Angeles in Orange County. If approved, the various new projects would be carried out within 10 years of the approval date, with the potential for another $600 million in capital investment to follow.

The proposal, known as DisneylandForward, calls for new attractions and hotels to be constructed on the west side of Disneyland Drive. In addition, the theme park’s operators are looking to add new shopping, dining and entertainment space to the southeast at a site that currently houses parking for the Toy Story attraction.

The proposal was originally discussed with the Anaheim City Council last Thursday. According to a summary of that meeting, the proposal does not request that any new acreage, square footage or hotel rooms be developed, but rather that approved development plans be shifted onto lands that Disney already owns.

As part of the proposal, Disney would invest about $85 million of its own money in various infrastructural improvements in the area, including upgrades to parking structures, roads and pedestrian bridges. To make the project possible, the City of Anaheim would have to rezone certain tracts within the areas in question.

With regard to zoning, the Los Angeles Times reports that Disney is asking the city to give the company more flexibility to overhaul areas that were originally designated for hotels to also include park rides, attractions and retail stores. The Times also reports that in terms of specific infrastructure, Disney is looking to construct a 17,000-space parking garage, as well as three pedestrian bridges to cross over Harbor Boulevard and two additional bridges over Disneyland Drive. All of these measures would enhance accessibility to the park.

Also within the proposed package are funds for the development of affordable housing projects ($30 million), sewer improvements ($10 million) and enhancements to local parks ($8 million). Disney would also commit to various workforce training and development initiatives and programs for as many as 10,000 Anaheim residents.

A fact sheet with more information on DisneylandForward can be found here.

Disneyland spans about 90 acres and first opened in 1955. The entire resort and entertainment complex encompasses some 500 acres and employs about 35,000 people, according to a November 2023 article in the Orange County Business Journal. The media and entertainment giant’s stock price opened at $95.42 per share on Monday, Jan. 29, down from $108.97 per share a year ago.

— Taylor Williams

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