The Jewish Chronicle online is reporting Disney’s plans to build a new theme park in Israel. But a spokesperson for the Walt Disney company says there are no such plans in the works.
The 20-acre theme park, slated to be located in the Northern Israel city of Haifa near the Carmel tunnel, will cover approximately 20 acres. The entertainment complex will include a 25-screen cinema, plus shops and other facilities. The anticipated cost of the project is more than £107 million.
However, another source, fastcompany.com, reports that the project is being spearheaded by a “Disney-affiliated investment firm” called Shamrock Holdings, which has ties to the late Roy E. Disney – and that the development isn’t necessarily a Disney project.
For Disney’s part in the matter, it denies that it is building a theme park in Israel. That a theme park, partially funded by a Disney-affiliated company, has been green-lighted in the area cannot be disputed, though. How much involvement Disney has in the project remains the real question.
Regardless, Haifa Mayor Yona Yahav is excited about the project and what it means for the city. “This plan expresses confidence in our plans to turn Haifa Bay in[to] a thriving business area,” he said.
With such a small area on which to build, the project may be little more than a giant movie complex. But small Disney parks do have some precedent. Disney’s California Adventure takes up only 55 acres. DisneyQuest in Orlando, which is a virtual, interactive playground, covers even less ground.
We’ll keep our eyes on this one for further development.