Disney strikes new deal with French government

by Alfie FEATHERSTONE on September 15, 2010

After renewing its contract with the French government to include the surrounding undeveloped land near the existing park, Euro Disney has said it envisions building a third park.

The new agreement - good for 20 years - will allow the Walt Disney Company to retain a 40pc stake and continue building at their Marne-la-Vallee site outside of Paris for another 13 years. The news comes in the wake of reports earlier this year that the amusement park was suffering heavily under the economic downturn. Attendance at the existing park slid down to 6.5 million during the first half of 2010 for a total net loss of €114m (£95m) for the company.

The deadline extension now allows for Walt Disney to begin developing the land up until 2030. Previously, the deadline had been set at 2017, as per an agreement hashed out between the two parties in 1987. The newest agreement will aslo see an increase in the number of hectares that the French government is allowing for Euro Disney to develop.

Some of the proposed plans for new developments are said to include accommodation, entertainment and even an eco-tourism resort. Dubbed the Les Villages Nature de Val d’Europe, Euro Disney will plan to partner with Pierre & Vacances Group to develop the sustainable accommodation. The possiblity of eco-friendly holiday homes that would later be sold to private buyers has also been discussed.

Developed in phases over a period of 20-years, the environment resort could take over up to 500 hectares of the allotted land. Chief executive Philippe Gas said that the group was committed to the continued development of Disneyland Paris and its support of French tourism.

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