Could a new Disney Park be headed to Australia?
Since their induction into American culture in 1955, Disney Parks have become one of the most sought-after vacation spots in the United States. Following its opening in Anaheim, California, Disneyland experienced booming success leading to the creation of an even more significant, more ambitious project in the state of Florida. This project would lead Disney’s March to global dominance, eventually staking claim in Europe and Asia.
Originally called the “Florida project,” Walt Disney World wouldn’t come to fruition until after the death of The Walt Disney Company’s innovative leader, Walt Disney.
Walt Disney World would change the world of Theme Parks and eventually boom into four separate Parks surrounded by the endless amenities and Resorts we know today. The financial success of Walt Disney World would subsequently lead to an international focus for The Walt Disney Company, eventually building parks in France, Japan, and China; the youngest being Shanghai which opened in 2016.
Although the expansion of Disney’s Theme Park empire was not always met with welcomed arms, many have wondered exactly when the company will expand even further. As it has recently found itself in hot water with conservative politicians like Ron DeSantis, rumors have spread like wildfire considering the potential relocation of Walt Disney World. What’s the next step for the Theme Park business of Disney?
The Future of Disney Could Mean a New Park
Although the idea of moving the almost 23,000 acres Resort is nothing short of impossible, the notion of building something brand-new isn’t. It would seem that assuming Disney wanted to build a new Disneyland Park somewhere else in the world, expanding its global footprint, they have a suitor. Lord Mayor Sally Capp told the Herald that her town of Melbourne, Australia is ready for its own Disneyland. Capp went on to explain that she believes the continent deserves its own Disney Park and that she already has adequate space alloted for Disney to built its newest Theme Park. Fishermen’s Bend of Melbourne would become the newest addition in Disney’s international reach. According to CinemaBlend, the area, referenced by Sally Capp, is part of a large-scale urban renewal project. The 1,000-acre site would undoubtedly be suitable for a Park the size of Disneyland Resort which is currently around 500 acres.
Disney’s Current Position in Florida Could Drive Them to a Place Like Australia
The Walt Disney Company maintains a very liberal point of view, but unlike days of the past, the company has taken a public stance against more conservative thinking. As mentioned, this has led to a nasty feud between the House of Mouse and Florida politicians in Tallahassee, specifically Ron DeSantis. Lawsuits began flying following the signing of Florida’s Parental Education Act, eventually leading to a series of back-and-forths between the two entities. Although recently DeSantis has suggested that he’s finished with the Disney skirmish, the idea of building a new Park in a friendlier environment has been on everyone’s minds.
Disney World’s stance against what some call the “Don’t Say Gay” Bill grew from retaliation over sexual education in classrooms, quickly incorporating oversight of land and amusement parks. The publicized fighting between the two entities has made things difficult for Disney, and some suggest it is starting to show. Disney is currently hurting in several different arms of their business, to include movies, streaming, and domestic Parks.
During the recent third quarter earnings call, CEO Bob Iger confirmed that in the heat of their ongoing fight with the state of Florida, Walt Disney World did experience a rather significant decrease in Guests attendance. At the same time, Disney’s international Parks showed success. This begs the question if it would be worth it for Disney to focus on building Disneyland-style Parks in other parts of the world. Considering this isn’t the first time that Australia has lobbied for a Disney Park, it isn’t completely out of the question.
Australia Has Asked for a New Disney Park Before
According to Cinemablend, in 2005, Australia and billionaire Lindsey Fox lobbied to have Disney build a new Park in the country. As considered in their article, Australians are able and willing to allow Disney to create a new Park, with seemingly little concern over Disney’s liberal values. As well, they are one of the few countries that don’t have immediate or neighboring access to a Disney Park, with average flights to Los Angeles at 14 hours. There is indeed a market in Australia full of consumers who are hungry to experience what Disney has to offer.
Melbourne sits in the southeastern part of the continent in an area known as Victoria.The city is considered the mecca of everything tasty and trendy in Australia and would be an ideal location for a new Disney Park. As the epicenter for fantastic food and art and home to famous tourist spots like the Great Ocean Road, Mornington Peninsula, and the Grampians, Melbourne has much to offer and could be a big draw for Disney. It’s a shame that the efforts of Fox and Australia didn’t work out so many years ago. As Bob Iger has pledged to spend $17 billion on Disney World, maybe it would make sense to allot some of those funds to a new venture.