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Skyway

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The Skyway was a gondola lift attraction at that previously operated at Disneyland, the Magic Kingdom, and Tokyo Disneyland. Each iteration of the attraction took riders from their park's respective Fantasyland to Tomorrowland, and vice versa. The Disneyland Skyway was the first aerial ropeway in the United States when it opened in 1956.

History

Disneyland

The Skyway at Disneyland, built by Von Roll, Ltd. of Bern, Switzerland, opened on June 23, 1956 as the first Von Roll Type 101 aerial ropeway in the United States. The Skyway shuttled guests between Tomorrowland and Fantasyland in exchange for a "D" coupon. A few years later, the Skyway temporarily closed to accommodate construction of the Matterhorn Bobsleds attraction. The Matterhorn was to be built in the place of Holiday Hill, a dirt mound on which the central support pylon for the Skyway originally sat. The Skyway reopened alongside the Matterhorn, Motor Boat Cruise, Submarine Voyage and Disneyland-ALWEG Monorail System in 1959, with the Skyway passing directly through the center of the Matterhorn by way of two holes on either side of the mountain.

In 1965, the attraction's original round two-seater buckets were replaced by rectangular four-seater buckets designed by Imagineer Bob Gurr, doubling capacity.

During the Fantasyland renovation at Disneyland in the early 1980s, the Skyway made only roundtrips from Tomorrowland.

Disneyland closed the Skyway on November 9, 1994. At the time, a Disney spokesperson claimed in the Orange County Register that the closure was due to declining popularity and that the attraction's staffing would be needed to work the then-upcoming Indiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Forbidden Eye attraction that would open in 1995, though outside speculation suggests the closure was due to stress cracks in the Matterhorn supports and a desire to keep operating costs low. The attraction's supports and Tomorrowland station were removed shortly after its closure, though the Fantasyland station still stands derelict as of 2016. However, on May 11, 2016, the City of Anaheim approved a permit to the Walt Disney World Company for the "demolition of 5,132 sq.ft for Skyway Building #7301", signaling the likely demolition of the chalet as land clearing for construction of Star Wars Land had reached the chalet's western side. The chalet was finally demolished after park closing on June 14, 2016.

Magic Kingdom

The Skyway opened at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom as one of the park's opening day attractions on October 1, 1971. Like its Disneyland counterpart, the Skyway shuttled guests between Tomorrowland and Fantasyland in exchange for a "D" coupon. This version of the Skyway was unique in that it did not travel in a straight line over the park. Gondolas descended to an L-shaped turn midway through the attraction before ascending again and traveling on towards their destination.

The Magic Kingdom's Skyway closed on November 9, 1999, exactly five years after the Disneyland version closed. The Tomorrowland station was partially demolished in the summer of 2009 during the refurbishment of Space Mountain, with its lower level left intact to continue serving as a restroom facility. The Fantasyland station was used for stroller parking, then later demolished in 2011 make way for expanded restrooms and a new transition area between Fantasyland and Liberty Square.

Tokyo Disneyland

Tokyo Disneyland's Skyway opened along with the park as an opening day attraction on April 15, 1983. Though, like its American counterparts, it shuttled guests between Tomorrowland and Fantasyland, the overwhelming majority of the short, two-and-a-half minute trip took guests over the southwestern edge of Tomorrowland. This version of the Skyway uniquely was not open-air like its American counterparts, with Plexiglas windows keeping riders safe from the elements.

The Skyway with the shortest ride duration would also be the shortest-lived: Tokyo Disneyland's Skyway closed on November 3, 1998. The Fantasyland station, nearly identical to the Skyway chalet at Disneyland in California, was removed to make way for Pooh's Hunny Hunt, which opened in 2000.

Gallery


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Main Street, U.S.A.
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Fantasyland
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Other
List of Disneyland attractions


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Magic Kingdom-logo
Main Street, U.S.A.
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Adventureland
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Tomorrowland
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Frontierland
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Liberty Square
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Resorts
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Former Attractions and Entertainment
The Enchanted Tiki Room (Under New Management)Davy Crockett's Explorer CanoesMike Fink Keel BoatsMickey Mouse RevueMove It! Shake It! Celebrate It! Street PartyMr. Toad's Wild RideSkywaySnow White's Scary Adventures20,000 Leagues Under the SeaIf You Had WingsDelta DreamflightThe TimekeeperMagic JourneysThe Legend of the Lion KingMission to MarsExtraTERRORestrial Alien EncounterThe Walt Disney Story • Mickey's Birthdayland • Mickey's Starland • Mickey's Toontown Fair • Flight to the Moon • Donald's BoatMickey's House and Meet MickeyMinnie's HousePixie HollowToon ParkCountry Bear Vacation HoedownFantasy in the SkyPlaza Swan BoatsDream Along with Mickey • Penny Arcade • Tropical Serenade • Shrunken Ned's Junior Jungle Boats • Diamond Horseshoe Revue • America the Beautiful • American Journeys • Magic Carpet Round the World • Celebrate A Dreams Come True ParadeCelebrate the MagicCircle-Vision 360Disney's Magical Moments ParadeIt's Good to Be Bad VillainousMagic, Music and MayhemMickey's Twas the Night Before ChristmasPooh's Playful SpotSpectroMagicThe Character ParadeThe Magic, the Memories and YouVillains Mix and MingleVillains Sinister Soiree
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List of Magic Kingdom attractionsVirtual Magic Kingdom


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Tokyo Disneyland logo
World Bazaar
Omnibus
Fantasyland
Cinderella CastleSnow White's AdventuresSnow White GrottoPinocchio's Daring JourneyDumbo the Flying ElephantCinderella's Fairy Tale HallCastle CarrouselAlice's Tea PartyPeter Pan's FlightPooh's Hunny HuntIt's a Small WorldMickey's PhilharMagicThe Haunted Mansion
Adventureland
Swiss Family TreehouseWestern River RailroadJungle CruisePirates of the CaribbeanThe Enchanted Tiki Room: Stitch Presents Aloha e Komo Mai!
Tomorrowland
Monsters, Inc. Ride & Go SeekSpace MountainBuzz Lightyear Astro BlastersStar JetsStitch EncounterStar Tours: The Adventures ContinuePush the Talking Trash Can
Toontown
Mickey's House & Movie BarnMinnie's HouseGoofy’s Paint ‘n’ Play HouseDonald's BoatChip 'n' Dale's TreehouseRoger Rabbit's Car Toon SpinGadget's Go CoasterToon Park
Westernland
Big Thunder Mountain RailroadMark Twain RiverboatCountry Bear TheaterTom Sawyer IslandWesternland Shooting Gallery
Critter Country
Splash MountainBeaver Brothers Explorer Canoes
Resorts
Tokyo Disneyland HotelDisney's Ambassador Hotel
Former Attractions
Cinderella Castle Mystery TourMickey Mouse RevueHoney, I Shrunk the AudienceSkywayMagic JourneysDisney's Party ExpressOne Man's DreamStar ToursGoofy's Bounce HouseThe Disney GalleryGrand Circuit RacewayThe Party Gras ParadeFantasy in the Sky

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