Disney breaks new ground in Shanghai with £2.25 billion theme park
Work began today on one of Disney's most ambitious projects yet – a brand new £2.25 billion theme park in Shanghai, China.
The new Disneyland will boast the biggest Magic Kingdom of all the parks, and executives today broke the ground at the 3.9sq km park with golden shovels.
Disney is hoping the new mega-park will attract 7.3 million visitors a year when gates open in five years' time.
Details of the 963-acre park's design are still being worked out, but plans call for it to feature Disney's biggest castle, an 'attraction unto itself', a spacious green area, a lake and plenty of space for anticipated huge crowds.
Disney's latest park comes almost 60 years after its first was built, Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California, and it now owns five parks across the world, including one in Paris, Hong Kong and Tokyo.
Disney chief executive Bob Iger said the park would be 'authentically Disney, but distinctly Chinese'.
He told the Daily Mail: 'Today is the culmination of many years of hard work, dedication and partnership.
'This is a defining moment in our company's history.'
After more than a decade of haggling, Shanghai's communist leaders seemed equally enthusiastic about the project, which will serve as an anchor for an 'international tourism resort zone' with hotels and other large-entertainment venues.
'Disney is a classic urban entertainment brand,' said the city's mayor, Han Zheng. 'This project will help improve Shanghai's profile as a world famous tourism destination.'
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