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Steve Davison shares first photos of completed, wall-free, stage-free Central Plaza!

Monday, 19th March 2012 at 17:22

It’s the dawn of a new day. Construction walls have finally come down in Central Plaza, revealing the finished repaving project across the hub of the park following the much-celebrated removal of the overbearing stage which had resided here since 2009. After seven weeks of work through freezing conditions into the milder days of early spring, the completed Central Plaza is now a vast expanse of smoothly-finished concrete pavement — no obstacles, no obstructions, just a perfect view of Sleeping Beauty Castle and of course, the impending Disney Dreams! nighttime spectacular.

In fact it was Steve Davison, the director of Disney Dreams!, who grabbed these very first photos of the plaza without construction walls at 6am this morning. Though we don’t entirely envy Team Dreams with their nocturnal work shifts, seeing dawn break over a wide, open Central Plaza is one well-deserved reward. Steve shared the first photo above with the comment: “WOW! What a wonderful view! No Wall! No Stage. Just a beautiful view of the Castle. Enjoy!” He followed this up with further praise for our castle and a clearer critique of the poorly-integrated stage: “It’s so much better without the stage. It blocked this amazing piece of architecture. WOW! What a castle!”

That certainly suggests we’re not the only ones happy to see that back of the enormous stage, which presented three consecutive shows of varying popularity. Beginning with It’s Party Time… with Mickey and Friends in 2009, it then saw the far superior Disney Showtime Spectacular in 2010, before whimpering to a close with Mickey’s Magical Celebration last year. Even before those shows, the plaza was taken up by a smaller stage for the 15th Anniversary Candleabration show in 2007 and 2008, and for the castle lighting show of the previous Christmas, meaning the plaza hasn’t been open for guests since as long ago as 2006.

Deciding not the reinstate the small circular flower bed in the middle of the hub was probably a wise idea for crowd control during Disney Dreams!, but does such an entirely bare Central Plaza make an ideal heart for the park? Couldn’t they have done something more interesting with the floor, or is it best to just let the castle take all the presence here? Whatever your opinion, you’ll no doubt at least agree with Steve Davison that the view opened up is “Simply beautiful!”. We have a lot to thank Team Dreams for. Longer park hours, a real, nightly nighttime spectacular, and now a Central Plaza back to how it should be. No stage, just a beautiful view of the castle.

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  • Honestly, I have been beaming all day, I woke up not long after he posted it and saw it there, I kid you not, I have had the biggest smile on my face ever. I love that its completely bare, it let’s the castle take all the attention. And what a photo op! The emptiness is exactly what’s needed, and works a lot better than seating would because although seating would be nice, let’s face it; it would be even uglier than the stage. I think things are shaping up to be a very good year indeed.

  • Rae,

    i agree it looks great!! cant wait till my trip!

  • Yay, I’m glad its gone, but I can’t help feel that it needs something. Maybe a more decretive floor, rather than a circle of concrete?

  • Jamie Buzz Darani  19th March 2012, 18:06

    I would love to see the Partners statue from the Walt Disney Studios placed here, then a new statue maybe of Walt with a camera placed over at the studios.

  • Jamie I thought that for a little bit this afternoon (yes I’ve obsessed all day) but if the statue was here, it would restrict views of dreams, and take up a lot of space that could be valuable for the crowd wanting to see dreams. Just look at the size of the crowds that watch Fantasmic. I’ve only seen Fantasmic in WDW, but they’re so huge, and people get tickets just to see the show. I should imagine people will do the same here. If dreams only runs for the year, then yes, by all means move the statue. But if not, then this open space is really needed, and will be a huge aid for crowd control. Though I do hope there will be some organisation for safety and so on

  • It’s been so so long since I’ve seen that view…. Beautiful indeed!

  • Wow! That is astoundingly beautiful — DLRP Today, as soon as you get one, could you please post a picture of this new view when it’s sunny? Non-fans won’t understand why we’re all so gaga at a dull rainy picture! We know, but others won’t get it!

    I can’t believe how gorgeous the castle looks with it’s grand bridge in view again. Well done, DLP!!

  • Finally … Pure beauty!

  • Beautiful! At last that enormous stage has gone away for ever!! I’m really happy :) Great seeing again that spectacular view!

    But in my opinion, revaping the palza with nice pavers or bricks would be far better than the poor or ungracious concrete that the’ve used… don’t you think so? Now it seems kind of desertic, poor, unvivid… like an industrial area …
    And that concrete won’t stay so nice wthout any cracks during so long.. just like the concrete they’ve been removing recently! what an irony..

    FLOWERS, FOUNTAINS, TREES, NICE BRICKS, GRASS… Imageneers what happend with your ideas???

  • What a wonderful view you’ll get up Main Street now! The only thing I would have changed would be to maybe put a brick mosaic into the flooring of the open space like the mickey mouse that is made out of the floral bed in Fantasia Gardens when you enter the park. I think the same picture in coloured bricks would just lift that space a bit more and it wouldn’t get in the way of any guests!

  • now it is looking like Anaheim and Orlando.
    Is the statue WALT AND MICKEY also going to the middle area just like the other parks??

  • WOW! So happy to see that view again! The huge stage was very useful for shows I agree, but completely spoiled the view from Main Street. Brings back memories of posing for photos with my boys when they were young.
    Now where is that Disney Photographer…..??

  • I agree with gemma – a Mickey’s head in mosaic brickwork would look super in that circle, and still leave the space clear.

  • I’m glad they didn’t put Mickey’s head on Central Plaza. For me that area is still part of Main Street USA which reflects a small US town at the turn of the century. Mickey wouldn’t fit in my opinion. But they could have used bricks instead of concrete.

  • Well I have a completely different idea, maye some brickwork as you guys said but at night, just like Epcot, I’d prefer the center light up with maybe some fibre optic, light in the Atlantis movie, imagine how the kids would get excited when they see the whole ground under their feet come to life during Disney Dreams.

  • I love this view! It´s great to see again something of central plaza and not just a stage. I would even love to see the flower bed of the first 14 years here. If they need that space heavy: Another floor for the circle would be better.
    A mosaic would be great, but not a mickey head. More something that you can find in the arcades.
    But to see the plaza again is a great present for the 20th.

  • I think a mosaic of a compass would look really cool. It could have NSEW on it and also points for the various lands!!!

  • I’m glad the stage is gone too but can someone tell me, does this mean no more character shows? I loved seeing Mickey and characters in a show at the end of the day. Was really magical and the characters are what Disney is all about. Perfect way to end the day at Disney. I’ll be sad if there’s no such replacement. :(

  • I think what they will do is roll out a tribute of some kind for dreams,, into the central area like they had with wishes in 2006… wishes had a large circle flowerbed type, which i assume was added in one go, grown back stage

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