The Epcot Center at Walt Disney World Resort is undergoing a multi-year transformation, including a brand-new play pavilion, which will feature an interactive city. The city will be housed within the dome that was previously known as Wonders of Life, and more recently, the Festival Center. Inside this as-yet unnamed space, guests will find interactive games, hands-on activities, entertainment and, of course, your favorite Disney characters.
“This innovative, new pavilion is beyond anything we’ve ever created and is completely unique to Epcot,” Zach Riddley of Walt Disney Imagineering said in a statement. “Built on the power of play, it introduces an immersive and interactive ‘city’ where you can explore, create, and interact with some of your favorite Disney characters. This is an experience worthy of our bold vision for Epcot — and another signature element of our transformation.”
Here’s an illustration from Disney that gives us an idea of what to expect:
Disney has not revealed an exact opening date, but the announcement indicates that the refreshed Epcot would be ready in time for the upcoming Walt Disney World Resort 50th anniversary in 2021.
In addition to the debut of the new city, Epcot’s entrance is getting a makeover. A new design and restored fountain are part of the upgrade, which promises to “pay homage to the original park entrance with fresh takes on classic elements,” according to the announcement from Disney.
Later this year, guests will be able to get a glimpse of the changes coming to Epcot with the addition of a new Experience Center, which will feature interactive exhibits to help park goers visualize how the new Epcot will look and feel.
Previously announced additions to Epcot include a “Ratatouille” dark ride and a “Guardians of the Galaxy” roller coaster at the World Showcase, as well as a “Beauty and the Beast” singalong at the France pavilion and a new nighttime event at the World Showcase Lagoon.