You can see from the aerial image that the area encompassed by the permit entails all of the empty expansion pad between France and Morocco (expansion pads were originally designated for the addition of countries to World Showcase), as well as some additional space directly behind the France pavilion. The show building will be built on the expansion pad, and the queue area will travel behind the existing France pavilion and connect to the existing guest area in front of the pavilion.
According to the permit (which can be downloaded in full here), the area inside the red outline totals 5.70 acres. Currently, 1.10 acres are paved, 0.31 acres are occupied by buildings (mostly trailers), and 4.29 acres are “pervious” aream which is either dirt or landscaping.
The plans are to pave an additional 2.94 acres of the current “pervious” area and build retention ponds on the other side of Avenue of the Stars (the service road that circles World Showcase) to hold the additional runoff from the added impervious area. Several buildings will also be removed, but some additional buildings will be built to replace them.
As you can see from the imagery, some of the expansion pad is used for storage of food kiosks from the Epcot festivals, which will easily be relocated.
I’ve analyzed the multiple drawings in the permit and additional documents filed and have drawn up the rough plan below which shows the extent of the work, where existing structures are located, and where many of them will be relocated. In addition the dark shaded area shows a new access road to be built to serve the back of the restaurants in the France pavilion, since the current access road will be blocked by either the show building or the queue area. (Note: If I’ve mislabeled any of the backstage buildings, please let me know so I can correct it. I’m only going by what I can see on the permits and don’t have firsthand knowledge! Email me directly at [email protected] in case I don’t see it in the comments.)
Stay tuned to WDW News Today for more information on this new construction. Once things get underway, we hope to have construction photos for you on a regular basis, as you’ve come to expect from WDWNT!