5th Gate: PAST

CastlePAST.jpgFor some reason I have the 5th gate at Walt Disney World in my head, so I thought it would be a good idea to share this with all the Disney friends around the globe. The rumors for another gate have been of and on during the last couple of years, but I guess at the moment is not one that has high priority with the Disney management.

The main reason I cannot get this out of my head is the fact that I seen a map on Ebay for sale a good year ago that had the location already market for this gate. I followed the bidding but missed out at the end. Until today I have not seen any offering on another one of these maps on Ebay.

So, to see what the status is at the moment, I opened Google in my Firefox Browser and started looking for some news, rumors or even thoughts from other people on the web. One very interesting article from the beginning of January could be found on MiceAge.com from the author Kevin Yee. He talks about land clearing that has started and might be a sign of the new gate.

MiceAgeMap.jpgIf indeed they are clearing land already, we can already start talking about timelines. The land for Disney’s Animal Kingdom was cleared about thirteen months before they announced the park to the public. Assuming a similar timeline here, we might expect an announcement at the end of 2006. Curiously, and maybe this is no coincidence, that’s right when the 18-month Happiest Celebration on Earth promotion ends, and Disney World will be looking for some marketing oomph, some reason to get people excited to visit again. Could we be looking at an announced park in late 2006?

Make sure to read, if you haven’t done so yet, the rest of this great article.

Now what would be the 5th gate contain? A question I ask myself and of course cannot find an answer for (yet). If a 5th gate would make it to the Walt Disney World Resort will they catch up on the thrills frenzy that goes around the world? I am sure they see the success of the Expedition Everest in their own lands on how the guest are reacting and looking at in this time and age. Thrill rides are getting a lot of attention and might be something that would “rule” in the 5th gate, making a haven for the teens that are now drawn towards Islands of Adventure and Bush Garden. With the Beastly Kingdom revision rumor going around this might be the road Disney will take for their next installment. But there remains the question if this would fit in their whole “World”. They can’t just put up a couple of coaster and think that the guest will be happy, and a whole gate full of Everest’s might be an awesome addition for the thrill junkies, but the price for a park like this would never be possible.

Thrill rides will bring in those “other” guests. Mission Space did, Expedition Everest is doing it, and so the idea of a thrill park might not be such a bad idea.

But maybe Disney wants to go another way. With Pixar being part of the Mouse House the possibilities are endless if they would concentrate on a whole park of their creations. It is just an idea, I could be wrong, I’m sure I am. With Buzz already in the Magic Kingdom and the Bugs in Animal Kingdom it would not be an exclusive Pixar park, so I should just forget about this idea.

Another thing talked about on the web, including in the same article mentioned above, is a villain’s park. Now I would welcome such a park with open arms (if only to see more of my favorite villain, Shan Yu, from Mulan), but again I do not see that happen. A villain’s park would keep many younger children out, including their parents. You come to Disney for Disney Magic and happy ends, not just to see villains. Then again, the same thing would happen to the thrill ride idea, again keeping many guests out if they are not old enough to ride the coasters anyway.

So, even with the older rumors I think we will have to wait and see what Disney would bring into a new park. Will they try to lure the Thrill seekers or will they keep it the traditional Disney way (including PIXAR) when they announce (and if they announce) the new gate.

So what are you’re thoughts. Will we see a new gate in the (near) future? And if so will it be Thrills or something completely new?

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