I created this Illustrative Plan as a sister park for the Yesterland park (which was comprised of extinct attractions) that I shared a few months ago. This time the idea is to create a theme park solely out of never-built WDI concepts, resulting in a unique version of the DL-MK template. I tried to keep the contents limited to works that had some sort of official documentation, via released concept art and/or direct quotes from imagineers. Even with this criterion, there was a huge roster to choose from (although limited information about many), and I employed a lot of personal interpretation & embellishment.
BIG CITY, USA
This land is inspired by the never-built areas for Anaheim & Paris: marked by art deco architecture, jazz music, a speakeasy, Broadway, etc. I imagine the land being a bit taller elevation-wise than a typical MS:USA in order to create the street-canyon feeling of 1920s New York and Chicago. Because of this, numerous shops & restaurants could have 2nd Floor access. I brought an E-ticket attraction – the cancelled Crimestoppers shooter EMV – to the front of the park. The land is traversed by an El Train which has stops in several other lands.
This area, the smallest of the park’s lands, is a representation of Anaheim’s never built Hollywoodland, although the contents are mostly cancelled DHS attractions. The exteriors are from a similar era as BiG City (pre-war), but transition to historic Los Angeles architecture.
The urban transition on the western side of Big City crosses the Atlantic to Late Victorian London. London has the Poppins darkride originally planned for the MK, a public house (planned for DL’s Holidayland) and a Charles Dickens darkride (conceived for EPCOT). There is a large, manicured Gardens (Tivoli?) area, edged on one side by a European-themed in-park deluxe hotel (as imagined for WestCOT). The western gardens give way to a Japanese section, where the Imperial Palace of Edo houses the cancelled bullet train simulator planned for EPCOT. Japan & Europe transition to South America where a Caracas-themed area holds the Venezuelan tram ride (Tepuis) conceived for EPCOT. The Approach to this land from the Hub would pass under a recreation of the Brandenburg Gate and into a pre-war Berlin subsection, home to the never-built Rhine River Cruise.
This land is dominated by a monumental, riveted, man-made volcano-like structure built atop a ‘natural’ rocky caldera. Approaching this land from the hub, Discovery Mountain would loom in the distance with a jetpack Orbitron (TL 98) and dirigible skyway ride (Paris) occupying the foreground. The dirigibles, lagoon boats and El Train would pass through the Mountain itself before re-emerging at a different point.
The Discovery Mountain I drafted here was inspired by the Paris artwork, but on a significantly larger scale. There are three major access points onto the Main Level and one to the Upper Concourse (a second smaller access point leads from the Dirigible dock directly into the mountain's Upper Concourse). The El Train station is on the Concourse level as well. There is also a partial level below the Main, where the Nautilus is docked and patrons of Nemo’s Grand Salon may dine on a water-level patio. I imagined the central ‘Terravator Drill’ to be a mild B- or C-ticket (just a way to get a unique view of the interior of the Mountain), rather than a thrilling Freefall ride. Passing out of the Mountain's southern portal, visitors would come upon a northern forest and two attractions that were part of Anaheim’s Discovery Bay project.
A number of really great-looking, but never-built, castles were recently featured at the DL Gallery. This one might be based on a John Horny (I’m a great admirer of his work) proposal for HKDL (or elsewhere). In the castle's dungeon is a Living Character Initiative Dragon’s Lair (like Paris, but the Dragon interacts with passerbys), a project conceived for Anaheim. Two of the obligatory darkrides (Sword in the Stone, Sleeping Beauty) are some of the few attractions in this exercise that I had to base solely on words rather than released artwork. These two were designed for the MK before its 1971opening, but then dropped for new versions of the Anaheim darkrides.
There is available artwork for the remaining FL attractions (and a model for the central Pixie Hollow-version of Junkyard Jamboree). The two biggest rides in the land anchor opposite sides: Caer Dalben marks the exterior for the Black Cauldron potc-like boat adventure, and a frozen, icicle-spired edifice houses Davis’ Enchanted Snow Palace. The Mermaid ride would be the overhead rail version planned for Paris in the early 90s.
Among the most famous of never-built projects, this area is a natural adjunct to Fantasyland and fits nicely into this park, despite being designed for Animal Kingdom. I kept the land familiar (central Unicorn Maze, eastern Fantasia Gardens, western Loch Ness Landing), but embellished Dragon Tower quite a bit. Being a marquee ride for a park full of E-tickets, I gave the Dragon (or bats) a mountain range to fly about (as to minimize the need for lots of unsightly track superstructure while allowing for a highly-thrilling ride).
Entered from the Hub, visitors would pass through a frontier fort as was planned for HKDL before the press-release version of that park was canned. While this is a somewhat familiar experience, the view on the other side would not be: in the distance Geyser Mountain (crowned by a large mining derrick carrying unfortunate passengers) would periodically spew water into the sky from its pinnacle. The area immediately behind the entrance fort is a western town square, with a raised speaking/hanging platform or stage (mock hangings for the Halloween nights?) in the dusty center. The Lewis & Clark raft ride (Virginia America project) would pass herds of bison (AA), elk, grizzly bears, etc. The redrock buttes of Utah & Arizona would form the imposing façade of the comical Western River Expedition. Southwest Indians would inhabit a Mesa Verde, Pueblo style hill-town (MK).
The rockwork range of Frontierland transitions into a prehistoric Badlands rollercoaster (based on two never-built Dino coasters: (i) press-release HKDL’s, which would have had ‘living’ dinosaurs (AAs); and (ii) Animal Kingdom’s, based on a 20th C. dig site). A large subsection of Adventureland is a Pirate-era town (HKDL proposal), built around a massive PotC flume ride, Skull Mountain. In this area are the conceptualized Pirate shooting arcade from Paris and the Rogues Gallery walkthrough from Anaheim (that evolved into the original PotC). The third sub-area of Adventureland features a jungle explorer theme. The centerpiece attraction is a mix of Jungle Cruise and Indiana Jones Adventure, a fast-paced indoor-outdoor jeep ride planned for Paris, with a thrilling indoor “Lost Temple” sequence. Opposite the Jungle Jeeps queue is an ancient tree(house) which marks the watering-hole animal-blind attraction planned for EPCOT’s never built African pavilion.