New Concept Art Released for Disney World’s Affordable Housing Initiative as Plans Head to Zoning Board

Published: February 15, 2024

Walt Disney World has released some new concept art for its Affordable Housing initiative that is set to break ground later this year. The new artwork comes as the plans are set to be heard by the Orange County zoning board in a meeting this morning.

In this first piece of concept art, we can see an overview of the project, with State Road 429 (Daniel Webster Western Beltway) running along the right side of the image, and Disney’s solar farm on the other side of the 429. The affordable housing project is located near the intersection of Hartzog Road and Avalon Road. The area in question used to be part of the Reedy Creek Improvement District, but when the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District was created, this piece of land was abandoned by the state legislature’s actions.

The concept art above shows wetland areas to the south and west of the site, and unrelated development in the upper left of the image. Disney says that they envision a place where cost-burdened renters can focus on their personal growth and prosperity by gaining access to affordable housing. Disney has partnered with The Michaels Organization for the development.

In this ground-level concept art, we can get a better idea of the style of the affordable housing accommodations. Disney says that there will be approximately 1,400 units of mixed-income housing, and more than 1,000 of which will be reserved as affordable as defined by availability to families that make 50-100% of the Area Median Income (AMI). While the affordable housing will be open to qualifying Cast Members, it will not be limited to Cast Members.

Disney first announced the project back in April 2022, but the company says that plans for an affordable housing initiative have been in the works for years. Disney says that they anticipate the first units to be open and available to rent starting in 2026.

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