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Disneyland Article
Parking At Disneyland Mickey And Friends Gets Sensors And Another Garage Is Under Construction

Source:Orange County Register
Author:Marla Jo Fisher
Dateline:March 08, 2019
Posted:March 22, 2019
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It's no secret to anyone who goes to Disneyland regularly that parking there can be tough.

The Mickey & Friends parking garage - which was reportedly the largest in California when it opened in 2001 - can be bursting at the seams on weekends and holidays, requiring drivers to be diverted to auxiliary lots.

A new garage is under construction adjacent to the existing one that will provide 6,500 spaces when it opens. Visitors can see the new escalators under construction that will bring park-goers down from the upper floors - and a pedestrian bridge will allow them to walk over Magic Way into Downtown Disney.

But, meanwhile, Disney is also working to beef up its existing parking, especially since more people than ever are expected to arrive for the advent of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge in June.

The latest effort is the installation of parking sensors, which began in January, that will tell drivers at once how many empty spaces exist on each floor, and where they might be located.

Many people are familiar with this technology from shopping malls, where it's been used now for years. Disney hasn't said specifically which technology is being installed. Various systems use magnetic, radio-frequency sensors or cameras to monitor the number of slots available, though there's competing technology as to how to do it.

Disneyland Resort officials said that the sensors will display available spots on each floor. Drivers on the prowl will see a green light when they drive down a row where a space is open. Digital signs at the end of each row will indicate how many spaces are available.

Each floor requires several weeks of installation, calibration and testing, Disney officials said. The work should not affect guests to the park. Officials hope the system will begin operations in a limited way in June.

Disneyland annual passholder Vanessa Dawson of Rancho Santa Margarita said she doesn't even park in the Mickey & Friends garage, preferring to head to the Toy Story lot on Harbor Boulevard.

"I can't stand the madness of that huge place," Dawson said. "Half the time, they redirect people (to other lots) anyway."

She was dubious as to how useful parking sensors might be, but said maybe it could help "the evening guests who come after work."

"This will help people who come later to enjoy the parks," Dawson said. "t will help them not have to circle back around the whole lot (looking for a space)."

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