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  1. #46

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    Wink Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve DeGaetano View Post
    Hmmm...your idea of 50% and mine vary widely. The Grand Canyon still is a great piece of classic diorama building.

    BLEEEECH! Dead animals that died at least 40 years ago.

    And you might want to check the definition of "flora." The Adventurland segment of the ride is anything but "devoid" of that particular ingredient.

    You see tree trunks and a bunch of brush. It could / should be filled with orchids, and tropical irises and bamboo and flowering bushes.


    And contrary to Pragmatic's analysis of this section, someone isn't quite "paying attention." The WDW steam engines were not a "Disney railroad that used to haul sugarcane." The four WDW steam engines hauled hemp.

    Let the lashings begin, I admit, I was way off there.

    And there is a very specific reason the Tokyo trains traverse the route they do--and it has nothing to do with "appropriateness."

    OK Let's hear it, this will probably be interesting and informative.

    If you two don't think that being able to see the steam trains glide through a section of Deepest Darkest Africa while your guide shoots at hippos is a recipe for disastrous storytelling, then I guess you don't get it.

    Actually, Pragmatic and I both conceived of a way that from it's vantage point the trains might be able to peek in and see the tops of boats and some monkeys in the rocks while the JC passengers only see what's in front of them. (They'd be down lower...)

    (Pragmatic, I'm especially disappointed that you don't see this--especially since you've been such an advocate for seamless storytelling).
    Pragmatic, I'm especially disapointed in you for having a different opinion. Tsk, tsk, tsk!

  2. #47

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    Cool Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    Quote Originally Posted by PragmaticIdealist View Post
    The D.R.R. of 2007 is filled with several examples of poor showmanship, especially at night.
    Agreed, dude.

  3. #48

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    Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    The DLRR is putting on two shows at the same time. One is a display of Disneyland and all the fun wonders of this marvelous theme park. The other is a recreation of rail travel in a bygone era. They don't always mesh seamlessly. Sometimes, both shows are occuring at the same time... other times, they follow one another. The guest needs to shift a few mental gears from time to time.

    From Main St. to Splash Mountain, you're mostly seeing a display of Disneyland the theme park. Around the Rivers of America, you're plunged into the bygone era. Then it's back to Disneyland... specifically unattractive backstage. An 1890's steam train is certainly an anomally through Toontown and Tomorrowland. The diorama could even be seen as a third show element. Then, back to Main Street.

    A little plussing here and there would be OK. Bring back the panther. Theme a couple of tunnels. There are a few sections where, really, nothing much is going on. But that's ok. You're on a steam train. That's the attraction. You're never going to make the train ride a total immersive experience nor a total park tour.

    Frankly, I'd love it if the narrator would go ahead and acknowledge the backstage area near the roundhouse and direct riders to turn their heads and get a glimpse of Disneyland's inner workings. I'd hate it if they put up sets and props to decorate this area.

    I can see that running the train through the Jungle Cruise would be an interesting visual for the train riders. Even the Jungle Cruise riders would probably be only mildly jarred since they're still very well aware they're in a theme park and not the real Amazon. BUT... what if it was Autopia next to the Jungle Cruise?

    One must always guard against the "cheese" factor. I'm so glad the DLRR trains aren't boarded and "robbed" each journey.

    Bells and whistles belong on the locomotive, not beside the track.
    "Yesterday, a man walked up to me and said, 'Isn't it a shame that Walt Disney couldn't be here to see this?' and I said, "He did see this, that's why it's here."
    -Art Linkletter July 17, 2005-


    When you wish upon a star your dreams come true.


  4. #49

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    Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    And there is a very specific reason the Tokyo trains traverse the route they do--and it has nothing to do with "appropriateness."

    OK Let's hear it, this will probably be interesting and informative.
    Your dripping sarcasm suggests that you will find the reason neither interesting nor informative, but I will tell you anyway: the length of the Western Rivers Railroad as well as the fact that it only has one station was determined so that the railroad could avoid being classified as a commuter railroad (which are heavily regulated in Japan.).

  5. #50

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    Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    Actually, Pragmatic and I both conceived of a way that from it's vantage point the trains might be able to peek in and see the tops of boats and some monkeys in the rocks while the JC passengers only see what's in front of them. (They'd be down lower...)
    You may have "conceived" of a way, but your idea shows that you perhaps have little understanding of railroading and the basic layout of Disneyland. The grade that would be necessary for the trains to get up to the level you suggest, in the distance required, would be physically impossible for the train to ascend.

  6. #51

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    Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve DeGaetano View Post
    Your dripping sarcasm suggests that you will find the reason neither interesting nor informative, but I will tell you anyway: the length of the Western Rivers Railroad as well as the fact that it only has one station was determined so that the railroad could avoid being classified as a commuter railroad (which are heavily regulated in Japan.).
    AHHH yes, I remember reading that somewhere before, actually.

    Sorry for the sarcasm, no disrespect meant - I actually think you've got a lot of great information to share on MiceChat, I'm glad you post here.

    I know the DLRR is near and dear to you but don't take it too seriously!

  7. #52

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    Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    Quote Originally Posted by CaliforniaAdventurer View Post
    I know the DLRR is near and dear to you but don't take it too seriously!
    If I don't take it seriously, and try to remind folks of its import, it will only be a matter of time before it's boarded by a band of merry buccaneers let by Capt. Jack Sparrow.

  8. #53

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    Wink Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve DeGaetano View Post
    If I don't take it seriously, and try to remind folks of its import, it will only be a matter of time before it's boarded by a band of merry buccaneers let by Capt. Jack Sparrow.

    OOOOHHHH nice idea!

  9. #54

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    Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    A cartoon character has already made its way onto one of the engines' decor; Can boarding pirates really be too far-fetched?
    Last edited by Steve DeGaetano; 02-15-2007 at 11:22 AM.

  10. #55

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    Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    I understand Steve's apprehensions. I don't trust most of the people in Imagineering and Operations, either. But, of course, in my own mind, good taste and preservation of original design intent are at the forefront of the way I imagine such improvements.

    I was one of the people who fought inside the company against Jiminy Cricket. And, I was even against Engine No. 5 being named after Ward Kimball because I believed that honor should be reserved for someone associated with the Santa Fe Railroad. I was specifically advocating naming the locomotive the "Mike Martin" since that name also belongs to Walt Disney's uncle who was an engineer, himself. As a boy, Disney would meet Martin whenever he was steaming through Marceline. And, he is credited with helping develop Disney's passion for railroading at that early age. But, at least, the efforts of myself and others were successful in keeping the full-color artwork of Pinocchio's sidekick off the lantern.

  11. #56

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    Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    Quote Originally Posted by PragmaticIdealist View Post
    But, at least, the efforts of myself and others were successful in keeping the full-color artwork of Pinocchio's sidekick off the lantern.
    True enough. Ray Spencer, the Imagineer who art-directed the project, fought hard as well (He's one of the Imagineers I trust). The final design is a compromise that had to unfortunately be made to satisfy the "higher-ups."

  12. #57

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    Wink Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    Quote Originally Posted by ExJungleSkipper95 View Post
    I also agree that Disneyland could certainly do more to improve the railroad. They need to theme some areas and improve others. For example when the train leaves Main Street station the guest is shown some of the backstage areas behind Main Street and beyond the berm. I know it's difficult to hide these things but not impossible. As the guest travels through Adventureland you see nothing but a hill of foliage. There was a black panther on a rock a while back and he dissappeared, only to leave the rock behind. Then out of the blue you see some mardi gras props and then a tunnel and then New Orleans Square. What the heck happened there? No gradual theming. Just a sudden change from the jungles of the amazon to mardi gras. After New Orleans Square it's by far the best section of the railroad, with all the theming and scenery. Once it gets past the old thunder ranch it all goes downhill again and stays that way. I usually tend to ride the railroad from new orleans to toontown because it's the only real decent part.
    Considering it was Walt's favorite attraction and the whole basis (raison d'etre) for creating a giant model railroad with a theme park in the middle, you'd think Disney would plus it up a bit. It's seriously a letdown, the Adventureland section is boring, then you get these jarring Mardi Gras props and boom you're back in Ol' N'Orleans. Then it's cool, you go through Splash Mountain (but it was closed last time I visited, and we had a dark tunnel to go through.) Then we popped out in Critter Country, which is fun in the day time, but it was dark. So we continued around in the dark until we get to the backside of "What's that foolish waste of space" (Festival of Fools arena), a little bit of backstage, then the sewer tunnel. Followed by Toontown/Small World (nice) and the backside of Agrifuture in the dark. Then the smelly musty ugly Grand Canyon, followed by the dinos that don't move. Then the last tableau of the Dinosaur Diorama, you have something interesting to view. Then without explanation you're back at Main Street looking over your shoulder at the entrance to DCA.

    So what story are we telling here again? That mass transportation sucks and the autopia (driving your own car) is the way to go?

  13. #58

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    Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    Since, as Steve mentioned, almost 75% of Disneyland guests experience the Disneyland Railroad, the objective of improvements would not simply be to attract the remaining 25%, but also to encourage the existing passengers to take the train more frequently.

    Ideally, as guests enter Disneyland, they should experience the grand circle tour. And, as they leave, each of them should do the same so that his or her Disneyland visit is given bookends, so to speak. Then, of course, throughout the day, guests can use the trains as transportation from one station-stop to another. Also, if the lighting along the right-of-way is especially well-designed, sufficient difference between the daytime and nighttime versions of the tour may exist so as to encourage guests to experience both.

    If the show is interesting and detailed enough, I'm convinced that guests would naturally spend more time aboard the trains. And, that additional 900 passengers per hour would make a huge difference to Disneyland's overall capacity, as well as to The Magic Kingdom's ability to reach its 10-11 Rides per Day (R.P.D.) targets.

  14. #59

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    Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve DeGaetano View Post
    A cartoon character has already made its way onto one of the engines' decor;
    Gah, I'm sorry if the answer has already been posted. But that was too much of a tease, I MUST know what cartoon character is already on DRR engine.

  15. #60

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    Re: Improving the Disneyland Railroad in Order to Utilize Excess Capacity

    Quote Originally Posted by Wally View Post
    Gah, I'm sorry if the answer has already been posted. But that was too much of a tease, I MUST know what cartoon character is already on DRR engine.
    No problem...

    Engine No. 5, the "Ward Kimball", features a silhouette of Jiminy Cricket on each side of the lantern because Kimball is, perhaps, best known for being the supervising animator of that character.

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