There was a charm and a sense of "character" with the older bridge.
It's pretty obvious here ... the "lawyerneers" are making Disneyland more "Lawyer Safe" so people don't do stupid things they know the should not be doing. Hence .. TALLER walls along bridges, and other areas where people are not allowed, the end of Skyway, still no Peoplemover to this day, the window fiasco .. and the umpteem number of changes to the design to the Mark VIIs .. and it goes .. and on .. and on. All moves, to keep people from dangling their arms, their legs, their 'whatever' from tripping, falling, whatever .. and then try to sue Disney.
Pretty soon ... Disneyland will be so Lawyer Proof .. there'll be no surprise when the walkways, ride vehicles will be designed in such a way ... I won't be surprised to see Over-the-shoulder restraints on 'it's a small world'.
Looks fine to me.
I've watched enough old movie musicals that take place around 1890-1910 where pain-staking thought was applied to make the most authentic, charming, warmest, and most "intimate" designs possible.
The Music Man, Meet me in St. Louis, On Moonlight Bay, .. the list goes on.
So .... this little chat will dissipate into the cyber winds ... but the smaller scale of quaint bridges ARE giving way to more modern bridges that manage to have some "old America" look. Is it the best to deal with today's crowds? Yes. Is it the most authentic recreation of "Turn of the Century, Small Town America" .. which is what Disney is attempting to do, in this BE-ALL theme park? My opinion - no.
It was obviously done to prevent exactly what is happening in that last picture. Children sitting on the rails. I work at a theme park, and believe me... accidents happen! When you're talking about thousands (and in Disney's case tens of thousands) of guests per DAY.... accidents happen, no matter how many times you say "no sitting or climbing on hand rails, please" or put up signs, or any other assortment of safety spiels. Either people flat out don't listen, or accidents simply happen. In this case I could see the rails on that bridge being a problem.
Now the other question is could that issue have been fixed without such a fanciful replacement? Perhaps... I'm not 100% sure. IMO, though, the bridge looks good, and matches the interior of Carnation Plaza. But that's just me...
Now that I've posted my snark, let me post my opinion. It's not a bad look, for somewhere else. The way the bridge is built now makes you notice it. The way it was before was understated and didn't distract from the surrounding area. The real minus for me is the fact that it looks like your standard, off-the-shelf wrought iron that you can buy at your local Lowes rather than something that's been built for the area. I understand the safety regulations, and people will be stupid, however, I think the bridge could have been done better. It's not the end of the world, however.
I completely agree. It's fine, but it is functional at best. I recognize the fence. It's off-the-shelf from a Canadian company called Karels. Another poster hit the nail on the head. It's very much what I would expect from a track home circa 1990-something.
I'm not impressed. What disappoints me most is the lack of attention to continuity with adjacencies, period and theming.
I'd give it a C.
The other thing that bugs me is it breaks up the visual flow of the area. The rock columns block the view into the Carnation Plaza Gardens and make seem walled off from the rest of the Hub.
Improvement. +1 for the mouse.
It's well known that Walt Disney had only a year to build his dream of a theme park and only 17 million dollars to work with at the time. He was known for fixing and changing things in his park to better fit the needs of the audience and even stated that he loved how Disneyland was not stuck in a can that could not be changed like his motion pictures. He constantly changed and added things to the park over time and got rid of things entirely that didn't work in the interest of replacing them with things that did!
When Walt died, Imagineers have tried to keep that spirit alive and have attempted to do the things that Disney would have wanted but could never achieve because of money, technology, or otherwise. One example of this was the Fantasyland rehab in 1981 when Tony Baxter and many of the original Imagineers who worked beside Mr. Disney himself completely destroyed and remodeled Walt's favorite land. When the dust settled in 1983, the Imagineers recreated Walt's original vision for Fantasyland that could have never been accomplished back in 1955 because of the sheer lack of finances.
It's hard to say what Walt would have or would not have done back in when he was alive because a lot of the things Disney has now (finances, technical know how, time, etc.) were just non-existent back in those days. As far as the original fence is concerned, who's to say that it was the look Walt was going for in the first place? Maybe he did want something more elegant in place of the cheap looking fences but just did not have the finances and the time to pull it off?
Don't forget that Town Square did not have the reddish-orange cobblestone on the sidewalk around the flagpole that it has now when it first premiered in 1955! It was originally reddish-orange concrete because of the lack of finances available back then! The Imagineers have had to go back and slowly replace it to give it the look that Walt originally wanted for the area. It just goes to show you that no matter if it is an original piece back from the park's golden age or not, doesn't necessarily mean that it's what Walt ultimately would have wanted.
It's hard to say what Walt would have wanted for sure but with that being said, I like the change! It further compliments the ornate feel of the "hub" area and while it does not have the same quaint, intimate feel of the original, it's still very nicely detailed none the less. The only thing that I do not like about it is the overall height of the fence, it's just too high! I have very fond memories of walking over the bridge and gazing at the pond over the modest railing. As for the bridge it self, it's great in the detail department. I like the choice of materials and colors which, as I said before, compliment the area very nicely!
It may be much more detailed and almost formal looking than we were expecting but for me, I think it's a great addition to the park and a great change! There have been some modifications and changes to DLR that have not been so great, like the topper to the entrance to Paradise Pier for one, but the Imagineers have done a great job in this case.
This is not a decline by degrees. Better attention to detail here. I would say the old bridge was ugly and charmless. This is a nice upgrade.
If all they had done was some maintenance and replacement of a few rotten pieces of wood, they probably could have left it the same. However, current structural codes are much different than they were in 1955. As was mentioned earlier, the space between railing rungs must be no more than 4" and there is a specific height that has to be reached as well, depending upon the potential fall. These newer codes apply to any public structure, including apartment complexes and the like. While you can all scream about change, it isn't Disney who has caused this. It's the law. The bridge was 55 years old and needed full replacement. Given that, they had no choice but to bring it up to current code.
Woo!!! This is a lot of passion for a bridge.