Disney Requests 2029 Extension for Reflections Permits


Disney is seeking an additional 5 years to complete construction on a proposed Disney Vacation Club destination. 

Reflections Concept D23 2019

Back in October 2018, Disney announced plans to build a nature-themed hotel and DVC timeshare on the former home of River Country waterpark. Later dubbed Reflections - a Disney Lakeside Lodge, the new destination progressed normally until the COVID-19 pandemic struck in early 2020. Construction work was paused and Disney has yet to reveal any specific plans to resume. 

On May 8, 2024, Disney submitted a request to the South Florida Water Management District to extend its construction permits for an additional 5 years. If approved, this would extend the window to May 29, 2029. 

A cover letter included with the request states, in part:

"We would like to request an extension of this permit as construction is not yet complete. This project was shut down during COVID-19 conditions and therefore delayed the completion of this project."

Today, the work site remains surrounded by construction fencing. Ground clearing and some foundation work was reportedly completed before the shutdown in March 2020. This request would give Disney several years to decide whether to continue with the original Reflections plans or to pursue revisions. 

Reflections Site

This is not the first time a project on this site has been sidetracked. Back in 2011, Disney Vacation Club had commissioned designs for another facility on the same plot. However that design--including an elaborate pool with a lazy river--was sidelined as Disney gave higher priority to the likes of The Villas at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Disney's Polynesian Villas & Bungalows

Reflections was originally set to open in 2022 as the fifteenth Disney Vacation Club destination. It has since been leapfrogged by no less than 4 other projects: the expansion of the Grand Floridian villas, The Villas at Disneyland Hotel, The Cabins at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort and a new tower under construction at the Polynesian

The Fort Wilderness cabins are currently on sale and scheduled to open on July 1, 2024. In a legal sense, the Cabins are structured differently than every other DVC property. The cabins have been placed in a Trust, rather than part of a self-contained Condominium Association. Some have speculated that the Trust will eventually be expanded, possible to include a new development on the Reflections site which is geographically very close to the Fort Wilderness cabins. 

h/t BlogMickey.com