Today Disney released further details of the coming overhaul of Epcot including a revamp of the Wonders of Life pavilion into a “play” themed pavilion as well as an artist’s rendering of the new vision for the Epcot entrance plaza that had social media buzzing most of the day, and for good reason.
Most notable in the artist rendering is how similar the new entrance plaza looks compared to the original from 1982! Fans of pre-2000’s Epcot rejoiced at the return of that iconic, triple spired transparent sculpture emblazoned with the original Epcot logo to the fountain that has become an icon of 1980s Epcot. The fountain sculpture was lost
when the park transformed the entrance plaza with the legacy sculpture of the Millennium Celebration (which incidentally is nowhere to be found in the artist rendering, it will be relocated to an area just outside the gateway to the park). Equally exciting are the numerous flags appearing to display the original Epcot logo flowing in the breeze above the plaza (not original but a nice nod to the past nevertheless). The Disney Parks Blog stated, “This new design will pay homage to the original park entrance with fresh takes on classic elements.”
The other news was about the transformation of the Wonders of Life pavilion to a revolutionary “play” pavilion. According to imagineer Zach Riddley, “Built on the power of play, it introduces an immersive and interactive ‘city’ where you can explore, create, and interact with some of your favorite Disney characters. This is an experience worthy of our bold vision for Epcot – and another signature element of our transformation.”
Further, during this exciting transition period for Epcot, The Odyssey will become a new Experience Center providing guests vistas onto the exciting changes coming to the park.
In recent years with several changes to the park including Guardians of the Galaxy, Frozen Ever After, and the loss of IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth, it was understandable fans would worry the original essence of Epcot was being relegated to mere memories. Today’s announcements should allay some of those worries and preserve hope that the new Epcot will likely not only honor its past but continue upholding the spirit in which the park was originally conceived.