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Welcome to our Animal Kingdom Virtual Tour!

Disney's Animal Kingdom
News Clips 5 - 2000


From the Orlando Business Journal May 15, 2000

Eisner: Disney ready to expand Animal Kingdom slated for `whole new area,' says Disney exec.

Alan Byrd Staff Writer
LAKE BUENA VISTA -- Animal Kingdom is about to get a bit wilder.

Walt Disney Co. CEO Michael Eisner confirms that a "whole new area" currently is being designed for Walt Disney World's fourth theme park.
Eisner gave few details about the new section of the wildlife exhibit. Officials at Walt Disney World will say only that the area has not yet been announced.
However, Eisner listed the Animal Kingdom expansion along with the Safari Lodge and Pop Culture Hotel -- both of which currently are under construction -- as examples of how Disney is not slowing down its capital spending in Orlando.
"We need more capacity and more rides," the Disney chief said while in Orlando to kick off the Millennium Dreamers event.
When the formal announcement comes, it should put an end to persistent rumors about what would come next for Animal Kingdom -- rumors that began almost as soon as the park opened in 1998.
One likely addition is Beastly Kingdom, which originally was planned for the park. The area, which would be devoted to mythological creatures, also would feature rides, something Animal Kingdom now is missing.
In fact, the marketing materials and logos for Animal Kingdom always have had the silhouette of a dragon -- yet to date, there are no references to dragons anywhere in the park.
However, there are plenty of other candidates for expansion. Among them:
Shortly after Animal Kingdom opened, Disney officials stated they were considering opening another park area featuring animals from Australia, South America or North America.
Currently, the wildlife showcased at Animal Kingdom hails from Africa and Asia.
Disney has been looking for ways to boost attendance at Conservation Station -- and a currently unused tract of land connects that area to the "Asia" section of the park.
Finally, there has been talk of an expanded Dinoland -- including a roller coaster.

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