Permanent Future World Festival Center and Beer Garden, New Starbucks, Water Maze, and More Coming to Epcot for “Project Gamma”
While a new entrance area, Experience Center, and more has already been announced for the massive overhaul of Epcot, Disney has remained quiet about the future of Innoventions Plaza and the center of Future World since showing off some very early concept art at the 2017 D23 Expo.
What you see above has changed tremendously and now looks something like this…
As we alluded to in past posts, Innoventions West will be bulldozed, as will the Fountain of Nations, and Pin Central. The demolition of Innoventions West also means the demise of Club Cool, the Epcot Character Spot, and the Art of Disney store. Innoventions East is set to be only partially removed, leaving Electric Umbrella and MouseGear remaining. A new path to the left of Electric Umbrella will lead guests to the Guardians of the Galaxy roller coaster and the Play Pavilion more quickly from the park entrance when both open in 2021.
Replacing Pin Central and the Fountain of Nations will be an Epcot Garden area, accompanied by a permanent Beer Garden. Speaking of permanent, a new custom-built structure will be home to the Epcot Festival Center, a place for various events that are part of the now four annual events hosted at the park. With the popularity of the festivals, a dedicated bridge over this side of Future World will extend from near Spaceship Earth to the main entrance of this new Festival Center.
New, stand-alone structures will also be erected for Starbucks and various character meet and greets. This particular meet and greet facility should be a new home for Mickey and the gang, while Big Hero 6 and Inside Out characters will go elsewhere.
The final component is a trail called Journey of Water, leading down towards The Seas with Nemo and Friends pavilion. This trail will reportedly consist of a number of water features and will also be a child-friendly maze experience.
Disney has yet to announce any of the above offerings, but is expected to do so at the 2019 D23 Expo or sooner. This is all part of the ongoing reimagining of Epcot and specifically “Project Gamma”, which includes the yet-to-be-announced 2.5 year refurbishment of Spaceship Earth. It is expected to be completed in 2022 in time for Epcot’s 40th anniversary.