ANAHEIM, Calif. — Rather than catching its breath after opening its hugely popular Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge expansion, Disneyland is forging ahead with next year’s planned expansion, a land themed for the superheroes of Marvel comics and movies.
Officials in Anaheim granted the area at California Adventure Park a handful of building permits for projects such as a bathroom overhaul, a retail outlet, a microbrewery, a character meet-and-greet area, plus improvements to behind-the-scenes buildings. The construction permits assess the value of the work so far at more than $14 million, the Los Angeles Times reported.
One of the permits, approved Wednesday, allows for a 2,071-square-foot merchandise outlet, with three attached canopies, according to The Times. In comparison, the average home in the Western U.S. is 1,800 square feet, according to census data.
Disney fans have been following the construction through online searches of permits recorded at Anaheim City Hall.
Disney representatives declined to comment on the permits or what type of attractions will be included in the new land but previous press releases hint that one attraction may be an interactive ride that lets visitors help Spider-Man fight the forces of evil.
More details about the land are expected to be released at the Disney celebration known as D23, which is scheduled for August 23 to 25, at the Anaheim Convention Center.
Marvel attractions are also planned to open at Hong Kong Disneyland in 2023, at Walt Disney Studios Park in Paris in 2020 at the Epcot park in Florida in 2021.
In Anaheim, the construction and planned opening of a new land less than a year after the launch of the $1 billion Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge expansion is unusual in the theme park industry, experts told The Times. Most theme parks invest in new rides, expansions or overhauls of existing attractions every two or three years to help promote repeat visits from fans.
The Burbank-based media giant may be investing heavily on the company’s theme parks to take advantage of a strong economy, a steady demand for travel and Disney’s access to popular intellectual properties, characters and storylines on which to base new attractions.
Disney acquired Pixar Animation Studios in 2006 for $7.4 billion, followed by the Marvel comic-book empire in 2009 for $4 billion and finally Lucasfilm, the home of the “Star Wars” franchise in 2012 for $4 billion.