Two major construction projects at Disney World show signs of life despite the slow and unsteady construction in the non-residential sectors, and especially despite the desperately dire conditions of Disney profits due to the closure of the majority of their theme parks.
The first project underway is building a new Star Wars-themed hotel at Walt Disney World in Orlando. The hotel, which is more than just a hotel but an entire immersive theatrical experience, has been spotted by drone footage in making headway.
The hotel, called Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser Hotel, will mostly be underground, which won’t be a problem for guests as the windows are screens that look out onto the starscape. The only building that will be visible to guests after construction will be the entrance, a valet parking entrance that is a “spaceport” where guests enter and get transported to the Starcruiser. The hotel isn’t even meant to be left if guests don’t want to: the experience is intended to be filled with two full days of activities, theatrical shows, and dining experiences so that you’ll have plenty of things to do without visiting the theme parks.
The second large construction project underway is the preliminary permits for Disney Animal Kingdom’s thrill ride Expedition Everest—Legend of the Forbidden Mountain. Much of this production is based on speculation as the license is merely listed for “General Construction.” Still, the site's location plus ongoing rumors about the thrill ride—which will feature the fan favorite Yeti—are a good indication that this is what’s happening.
This all happens as Disney has posted a $4.7 billion loss in the third quarter of 2020.