Disney Reportedly Begins Demolition in Florida, Multiple Rides Closing Permanently

in Disney Parks, Walt Disney World

A picture from the breathtaking show Animal Encounters: Winged Encounters – The Kingdom Takes Flight at Disney's Animal Kingdom

Credit: Ed Aguila, Inside the Magic

Work has reportedly started on a previously announced project in Walt Disney World.

DinoLand U.S.A. front entrance sign inside of Disney's Animal Kingdom Park
Credit: Walt Disney World Resort

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During Disney’s 2022 D23 Expo, a popular, fan-oriented event where Disney announces upcoming projects, the company revealed it was developing plans to completely retheme DinoLand U.S.A. This land has been a staple of Disney’s Animal Kingdom Florida theme park since it first opened in 1998, providing guests with a prehistoric-themed area to explore and enjoy.

DinoLand U.S.A. is home to several rides and attractions, most notably DINOSAUR, a loud and intense romp through a prehistoric jungle.

Rumors regarding DinoLand’s extinction have run rampant for several years, with many fans criticizing the rather dated and tacky “Dinorama” portion of the area. However, many consider DINOSAUR to be a fun and exhilarating attraction, with guests shocked by this announcement.

Disney stated several new IPs (intellectual properties) were poised to take over DinoLand, like Moana and Zootopia, two of Disney’s biggest franchises.

This announcement came and went, with practically nothing changing in DinoLand over the last two years. However, Disney further committed to retooling DinoLand in 2023, only this time announcing Indiana Jones and Encanto would be the two brands to be featured in the new area.

Concept art for the all-new area coming to Animal Kingdom inspired by Encanto and Indiana Jones
Credit: Disney

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The concept art (shown above) reveals a totally reimagined color palette and atmosphere for DinoLand, with new areas and attractions being built. While not confirmed, Disney teased that DINOSAUR would be transformed into an Indiana Jones-themed ride.

Much like the original announcement, however, Disney has remained quiet on exactly what this project entails and when it will start, though Disney is now reportedly in the early stages of DinoLand’s demise.

As shown in a new post from Twitter/X user Imagineer2017, work has begun on this retheme just outsde the DINOSAUR attraction.

Oh man. They’ve already started tearing out trees over Dinosaur. You can see the show-building

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Multiple trees have reportedly been cut and chopped around the ride, revealing the usually-hidden show building. In response to these images, several fans shared their thoughts, with Twitter/X user BrianCPT saying, “I’m sad. And I still think it’s a mistake to not have a dinosaur presence in DAK, even if what they bring in is cool. Love Dinosaur and Restaurantosaurus. DinoRama can go.”

Twitter/X user InfamousJameiss shared their disappointment regarding the retheme, saying, “What a terrible era of retheming we are in. Upgrade what you have and build new. Keep what has gotten you here and encourage people to keep coming back.”

DINOSAUR is an opening-day attraction at Animal Kingdom and has been operating since April 1998. The ride is extremely dark and loud and places guests Mickey Ears-length away from some of history’s most ferocious and frightening creatures.

In a bizarre twist of fate, DINOSAUR was actually based on Disneyland’s Indiana Jones ride, copying everything about the California thrill ride right down to the track layout and ride vehicles. While the story and theme changed, the internal structure and “bones” of Disneyland’s iconic Indiana Jones Adventure remain.

With Disney planning to retheme DINOSAUR into an Indiana Jones-themed experience, the company is actually looking back to one of its most legendary thrill rides.

Details regarding Disney’s DinoLand overhaul remain vague, but permits indicate more work will begin soon. Disney is expected to share more information about the project at this year’s D23 Expo, along with other exciting new theme park plans.

Will you miss DinoLand U.S.A.? What’s your favorite ride at Animal Kingdom?

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