Disneyland announces plans to expand theme park

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Disneyland has been closed for more than a year because of the coronavirus pandemic. Not only will the Happiest Place on Earth be welcoming guests in just a few weeks, but The Walt Disney Company also made a surprise announcement that the park will be expanding.

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The company announced “DisneylandForward” Thursday, a multiyear expansion of the theme parks, CNN reported.

Exact details were not released, but the company did release designs that show rides and themed areas snaking through the property.

The Orange County Register reported the expansion will also include not only the theme park but also retail and parking growth.

Disney also didn’t release any details on the timing or the cost of the expansion, but it is not looking to use any more land than it currently holds, planning to work with the property it already controls.

>> Related: Disneyland, California Adventure to reopen on April 30

The company also has to work with the City of Anaheim on approval for how they want to use the land on the east and west side of the property, the newspaper reported.

“Because of the current rigid district structure, we just need more flexibility,” Jeanette Lomboy, Disneyland portfolio executive for Walt Disney Imagineering, said, according to the Register. “We’re excited about the possibilities and ready to dream. Believe me, we have no shortage of ideas, content or stories to tell or build.”

There had been rumors that the company could eventually add a “third gate” or a third theme park in addition to the original Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure, and one area that is currently a parking lot on the east side of the property had been discussed, but Thursday’s announcement did not announce plans of another theme park, the Register reported.

For details on Disneyland’s April 30 reopening, click here.