Expansion at Disneyland Is Rescuing California’s Economy

in Disney Parks, Disneyland Resort

Planning picture beside tourists posing as Disneyland rescues California's economy

Credit: Disney

Theme parks like Universal Studios and resorts like Paradise Pier Hotel are the beating heart of The Golden State’s tourism. Now, an expansion at Anaheim’s Disneyland is rescuing California’s economy.

Disneyland's multi-decade project artistic renderings as Disneyland rescues California's economy
Credit: Inside the Magic

After a mass of tech-industry layoffs and major cutbacks at studios, the state’s deficit rang in at a shocking $22.5 billion when the calendar turned 2023. What’s alarming is that this comes after the state declared a surplus of $100 billion in 2022.

So, when Disneyland is rescuing California’s economy, it’s from the brink of disaster. Disney is the largest employer in California’s Orange County. In 2022, travel spending grew to $134.4 billion. This tourism, in turn, supported 1.09 million jobs and resulted in $11.9 billion in tax dollars for state and local jurisdictions.

Governors Newman and DeSantis
Credit: Florida Gov. | Gage Skidmore

Unlike Florida’s DeSantis, the Governor of California, Gavin Newsom, embraces diversity and welcomes the spirit of Disney, saying, “In California, we don’t just tolerate our diversity – we celebrate it and all the ways it makes us stronger.”

But it’s not all smooth sailing. Amongst the reasons for California’s financial rut is the fact that it’s in the middle of a drought. The state overestimated water supplies and is seeing the risks associated with climate change. Plus, some cities simply recovered more slowly than other California spots.

Disneyland Rescuing California’s Economy With Anaheim Expansion

DisneylandForward theme park expansion map
Credit: Disney

The multibillion-dollar expansion is spread over 30 years. Already in the artistic-rendering phase, the expansion at Disneyland is rescuing California’s economy in some surprising ways. The first is through the projected tax revenue and benefits of increased tourism.

Disneyland is rescuing California’s economy because the expansion promises to bring in roughly 4,500 jobs. A recent California Planning & Development report stated that, for every billion spent, an additional $250 million is added to the area’s annual economic output.

Image of tourism as Disneyland rescues California's economy
Credit: Disney

Fans are certainly excited about the theme park expansion, but it’s going to be a long time in the works. The next step is Disney submitting an environmental impact study to the city in 2024. The first step of many, the expansion provides a beacon of hope for job-seekers and theme park enthusiasts.

What do you think about the Anaheim expansion? Will it be enough to bring California out of a dark economic era? Share your thoughts with Inside the Magic in the comments below!

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