Disney World to remain at 25% capacity, but still no time frame for reopening Disneyland, CEO says


The happiest place on Earth will continue to operate in a limited capacity amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Since reopening in July, Disney World has capped attendance at the park at 25% capacity. Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Chapek has now revealed the park will continue at that rate unless they get new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, reported USA Today.

"We're limited by the 6-foot social-distancing guideline of the CDC. And that translates, essentially, to about a 25% park capacity," Chapek told CNBC. "Every day, that's about where we're at: 25%. And that won't change until the CDC guidelines change."

While the Magic Kingdom and Epcot Center opened their gates this summer, Chapek didn’t sound hopeful Disneyland in California would see the return of visitors anytime soon.

In September, the company let go 28,000 workers in Florida and California. If Disneyland doesn’t reopen soon, they may be forced to start a new round of layoffs.

“Obviously, we're watching very carefully what the state of California does as an indicator of whether we can retain some of our cast members that are on furlough now,” Chapek added. “We'd like to keep them on furlough until we can reopen ... We'd like to put our cast members back to work – as many of them as possible – as soon as possible if the government will let us."

Chapek also disclosed the company’s negotiations with the state of California to try and reopen Disneyland have essentially stalled.

"It's not much of a negotiation,” the CEO said. “It's pretty much a mandate that we stay closed."

Last week, Governor Newsom said there's "no hurry" to provide new guidelines that will allow Disneyland, California Adventure and other theme parks in California to reopen.

“We feel there’s no hurry in putting out guidelines,” Newsom said. “We’re continuing to work with the industry.”

While Disneyland has remained closed since March, Chapek pointed to the company’s success in preventing a surge of positive cases within the parks that have reopened.

"I look across our Disney properties – be it Shanghai, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Paris, Walt Disney World, the Disney bubble for the NBA – and all I see is that we've been able to open up responsibly using the guidelines that health care experts have given us,” Chapek said.

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