Is a new northern entrance to Walt Disney World in the works?

Feb 12, 2015 in "Magic Kingdom"

Posted: Thursday February 12, 2015 8:41am EST by WDWMAGIC Staff

Disney has been busy over the last few years making a number of changes to the area around the northern edge of property behind the Magic Kingdom.

Individually, the changes to parking, utilities and minor roadworks don’t look very significant. But together, they may signal that Disney is looking to create a new northern entrance to Walt Disney World.

The latest, and perhaps most significant of the changes in the northern area, is the relocation of two backstage buildings - Cast Connection and Property Control. Both of these buildings are not accessible by guests, but can be found directly in the path of what could be a new entrance from Reams Road. Their move in March 2015 to an area behind Disney’s Animal Kingdom on Western Way frees up a great deal of space that would be critical to a new entrance.

Similarly, yesterday’s announcement of the summer 2015 closure of the Richard Petty Driving Experience at the Walt Disney World Speedway due to “future transportation improvements” may also be tied to the project. A new entrance from the North would need to integrate into the TTC to handle a high volume of traffic, that does not currently exist, so the removal of the speedway may allow for that secondary entrance and parking plaza booths.

Two key factors could be driving the addition of a northern entrance. Firstly, there is a huge amount of residential building in the area north of the Magic Kingdom, with Horizons West being among the most significant. Thousands of houses are being built, with many more planned over the next few years. Guests arriving from this area would find themselves having to take a long way around to reach one of the existing entrances to Disney property, which is not only inconvenient, but would also increase traffic on those other entrances.

Secondly, the expansion of the Magic Kingdom with New Fantasyland brought even more Cast Members to work at the park, further increasing traffic in the northern area where Magic Kingdom cast park. The situation requires police supervision during peak periods, and cast members are frequently delayed getting to work due to traffic.

It seems likely that any new northern entrance would address both of these issues, creating a new guest entrance that would bring guests directly into property along Floridian Way beside the Grand Floridian Resort, and improved access and parking for the ever increasing number of Cast Members arriving from the north.

Disney has not yet made any comment about expanding the northern entrance, and always, this unconfirmed information should be treated as speculation. 

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DCBakerJul 24, 2021

DCBakerJul 10, 2021

WDWtravelerJun 29, 2021

Photo update as of Tuesday, June 29, 2021. Overpass beams for the new Floridan Way overpass are in place now. This overpass connects Floridan Way south to World Drive south, near the gas station south of the Magic Kingdom parking lot. This is the view from the exit road south of the Magic Kingdom parking lot, with the retention pond in the foreground that used to be the WDW Speedway track. The gas station would be to the left of this photo.

ryguyMay 22, 2021

The road improvements the last few years have been well done. The flow is much better now.

castlecake2.0May 22, 2021

This is progressing somewhat quickly. I hope it gets the same landscaping package as the other side did.

DCBakerMay 22, 2021

peter11435Apr 21, 2021

Correct

wedenterprisesApr 21, 2021

sorry if this has been asked - so this new road means you won't have to cut across the TTC to get to the GF when heading north?

DCBakerApr 21, 2021

drnilescraneMar 16, 2021

That's the problem though - the geometry of the road means you can't see who is coming towards you from Seven Seas when driving north, you just know that they potentially won't stop (even if they are probably turning right). Now that movement is rarer I wish they'd turn it into a stop until it is rebuilt completely.

castlecake2.0Mar 16, 2021

I guess it’s because I’m usually driving through there at off peak times. I just always thought it was a cool design you’d never see anywhere else lol. Also the intersection isn’t as busy now that you can go south on world drive on the auto plaza side.

maxairmikeMar 16, 2021

That thing was the bane of my existence for several years, and it can't go away soon enough. It's great if you're going south on Floridian Way or west on Seven Seas, but if you have to go north on Floridian or left onto Seven Seas during park hours...

LilofanMar 16, 2021

You mean that weird intersection where each car guesses who will go first? I won't miss it .

castlecake2.0Mar 15, 2021

I hope we don’t lose that cool intersection at seven seas and Floridian way. also I hope they continue to add some landscaping around these projects so it doesn’t look so barren