A construction wall just outside Epcot’s International Gateway features artwork depicting a new “Skyliner” coming to Walt Disney World. Similar artwork with a few different renderings appears on a construction wall near the bus boarding area at Hollywood Studios. It is on the left side (after you exit the park) near the walkway to the Boardwalk, Swan and Dolphin, and Epcot.
Many will remember the old “Skyway” that used to be in Magic Kingdom–you can still see evidence of its now gone towers, for example, on the ground near Peter Pan’s Flight and Small World. Yesterland.com features a great photo of the tower that once stood in this location, . The Skyway ceased operation on Nov. 11, 1999. (If you’re curious about why the attraction likely closed, have a look at chapter 8 of David Koenig’s Realityland: True-Life Adventures at Walt Disney World.)
The new Skyliner will connect Epcot with Hollywood Studios along with several resorts including a yet-to-be-constructed Riviera, the Art of Animation, Caribbean Beach, and Pop Century. (Wdwmagic.com has some good construction photos of the new Riviera resort.) I have not seen any information on an anticipated completion date for the Skyliner.
The artwork suggests that the vehicles will be similar to those of the old Skyway, with at least one notable exception: the new ones appear to be enclosed with windows instead of open-air. No problems there unless you’re stuck inside with Uncle Frank who just polished off a plateful of tacos at La Cantina de San Angel. I didn’t see anything suggesting that the new Skyliner will have any distinctions that will remedy the painfully slow load and unload times that plagued the old version, but we can hope.
Here’s a painting of what looks to be the boarding area at Hollywood Studios:
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