Brickwalls & Billboards on the Boulevard
The biggest news is again focused on the square, domed tower on the far left of the development. Last seen as large, bare steel frame, the framework soon took on even more verticle metal pieces, providing a strong and perfectly moulded skeleton to hold the themeing to be added on top.
Bigger news for the project came mid-week, with the first appearance of something other than a metal frame for the series of façades – a wall! In reality, it’s not a “brickwall” at all, but simply a covering to package up the metal frame and allow the real themeing to be “stuck” on top.
Dingo 06 on DisneyMagicInteractive.com forum photographed the construction workers gradually moving up the left side of the tower and adding large, thin grey pieces to its side:
Later, Joel photographed work as it reached the top of the tower, with this picture (below left) showing just how thin the wall actually is. With much of the designs of each building already showing in the metal frames, it’s clear now that the covering they receive on top will be purely themeing, and these won’t be buildings in the sense of Studio 5 or Tower of Terror with thick concrete walls. Their construction is therefore very similar to the lowest dome on Tower of Terror (seen top left), which was constructed as a steel frame with the same maze of verticle “ribs”, before quickly having its themeing stuck on top.
As for the billboards – this popular feature seen particularly in the Hollywood Boulevard and Sunset Boulevard streets of Disney-MGM Studios is now certain to arrive on our own street. Atop the third floor of the building directly in front of the Tower, the main frame for a traditional Hollywood billboard can already be seen, built into the movie set façade below.
Gone Hollywood gone vertical
More big news came from just across the future Boulevard little over a week ago, as a second section of the street finally went vertical. As mentioned in many previous articles, this has been rumoured to be a reproduction of the ‘Gone Hollywood’ store’s façade from Disney’s Calfifornia Adventure (DCA). Compare the framework to the finished article and there certainly is a resemblance…
Notice that, should the chosen theme indeed be Gone Hollywood, our façade will be slightly smaller in length than that in California, with only one window on the Disney Bros Plaza side of its ‘Gone Hollywood’ sign and three on the other, compared with three either side at DCA.
With this frame in place, there remains much more still to come – expected to be the Hollywood ‘First National Bank’ and the ‘Broadway Building’ of the real-life Hollywood & Vine junction, along with the Hollywood hills backdrop itself, in front of the Studio Tram Tour station.
La Vieille Terrasse ?
Finally, the unexpected performance of the production from a real old-timer of the Walt Disney Studios – La Terrasse. Repainted completely in white just a few weeks ago, the concrete terrace has just last weekend been transformed with what appears to be a brand new coat of yellow dirt, grime and weathering on top, ageing it into the same timeframe as The Hollywood Tower Hotel behind.
It already has the ‘HTH’ symbol since its 2002 construction (albeit not recoloured yet), so it seems La Terrasse will still, in some way, be connected to the Hollywood Tower as well as the Hollywood Boulevard developments which have grown up around the deserted hotel. Can we expect it to become some kind of outside seating and garden area of the former hotel – a true “La Terrasse” built for the hotel’s wealthy guests to enjoy sun-drenched cocktails across from the hotel?
Just imagine – on a summers day next year, brand new guests might be able to enjoy a drink on the same spot, with only distant screams from 13 floors above to darken the sunny spirits…