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  1. #1

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    What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    Sorry, not trying to bash DCA, but I after last night I really need to ask this question. Disneyland has Main Street... which has the Main Street Vehicles, and the Horseless Carriages... but that's it, no other attractions. It's entire purpose is to get you into/out of the park and sell you some food and souvenirs along the way. It works. It is the only "land" in Disneyland that doesn't really have a lot of attractions (Frontierland aside which used to have more but that is another discussion entirely). Now back to the topic. DCA's Pacific Warf is it's own "land". It boasts 2 tours, a museum display a bunch of eateries a restroom and a photo spot. That's it... nothing else... no attractions. I find it odd that in the middle of a "theme" park the decision was made to build a mall food court. I've heard people say "well they were supposed to do this" or "that was supposed to go there" but I have to be honest... nothings there. Second part of the question, in this giant $1 BILLION DOLLAR revamp... what is going to happen to the wharf?
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  2. #2

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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    While I am on the topic... at what point did it become commonplace to have more food locations then attractions? I pointed out Wharf... but look at Hollywood which has MULTIPLE food locations all in the same spot. Or look at the Farm, which has a food location, then a spot to buy shakes directly behind it. I hate to say it but Disney spread everything out so much, it's like comparing New York (Disneyland) to Los Angeles (DCA). Where one is compacted and every inch is utilized, and the other is completely spread out, space wasted essentially. And it's not that I don't like DCA, I DO, my kids LOVE certain attractions there... I just wish there was a LOT more to do, and a LOT more for the little ones to do. Instead I see a food court, and more food locations EVERYWHERE... just wondering how this ever went from bad plan to actual construction is all.
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  3. #3

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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    Good observation TS.

    What's funny is the only thing it is good for is to eat. The 2 "attractions" are only used because they give free bread & tortillas. On top of that, the Lucky Cookie Eatery has been closed for...let's see.....DCA has been open 10 years....LCE has been closed 10 years!

    I guess it should be referred to as a "Food Realm".

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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    Its the best place for the beer cart though...

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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    That is pretty much its entire purpose in life. A place for crowds to walk through (crowds that have never existed), and to serve food. It is pretty much a pointless land.

    I have no idea what the plans hold for its immediate future (next 5 years) or if it will be in phase II should there be one.

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  6. #6

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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    Quote Originally Posted by techskip View Post
    Sorry, not trying to bash DCA,
    I don't see pointing out the obvious as bashing. When you state the facts it's not bashing.

    It boasts 2 tours, a museum display a bunch of eateries a restroom and a photo spot.
    I read this as "...2 tours, a museum display, a bunch of eateries..." I was a museum display? Missed that. A bunch of eateries? 2 is not a bunch. Then I re-read it again.

    Second part of the question, in this giant $1 BILLION DOLLAR revamp... what is going to happen to the wharf?
    I didn't see anything about it in the project thread. Could have missed it, didn't read all 51 pages. But at least initially it looks like it's going to stay the same.

    Quote Originally Posted by techskip View Post
    While I am on the topic... at what point did it become commonplace to have more food locations then attractions?
    That's exactly what I was thinking when you were comparing the Wharf area to a food court.

    I hate to say it but Disney spread everything out so much, it's like comparing New York (Disneyland) to Los Angeles (DCA).
    Well then, we found the first way to link DCA to the California theme.

    DCA isn't horrible and hopefully with this make-over it can become the park they originally promised and hopefully there is something up their sleeve for the Wharf area too.
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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    Quote Originally Posted by DLandFansAZ View Post
    I read this as "...2 tours, a museum display, a bunch of eateries..." I was a museum display? Missed that. A bunch of eateries? 2 is not a bunch. Then I re-read it again.
    Technically I lumped the tours in with the eateries, and as Ash mentioned... they used to have Lucky too! The museum display is about "Cannery Row" and while informative, it isn't exactly an "E" Ticket. Then you have a restroom, a photo spot... possibly an atm can't remember to be honest.
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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    Quote Originally Posted by techskip View Post
    I find it odd that in the middle of a "theme" park the decision was made to build a mall food court.
    Not if your name is Paul Pressler.

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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    Tech-

    Those are good points; it really doesn’t stand as a land of its own. In reality it’s not really a land in the traditional sense though, it’s a sub-land of Golden State. My understanding is that it goes back to the original planning for DCA. The story goes that Eisner and his cronies gathered for a retreat and basically designed the whole concept for the park, which you probably know. I believe that originally, their plan called for several lands that never made it into the final design due to budget cuts. Yes, the suits even cut the budget too much to execute their own design ideas. Anyway, supposedly the Farm, San Francisco Street, Napa area, Grizzly Rec Area, Condor Flats and Pacific Wharf were all suggestions for complete lands within the park, but when the budget was cut, they came up with the idea to combine all of these into one big land called Golden State. So, I think they felt like there are several attractions in Golden State so it’s ok if some of these little sub-lands don’t have any rides.

    Rumor has it that WDI really wants to create a good San Francisco themed land since the SF street is going away for TLM, and that likely it would mostly encompass the Pacific Wharf area. I believe is very Bluesky though and I don’t think would come about until Phase 2 or beyond. Baloo and I were just discussing this issue in my Paradise Pier thread.
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  10. #10

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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    I thought the Wharf was the counter-weight that keeps the Sun Wheel from sinking into the lagoon.
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  11. #11

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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    Well, the overall park design and layout of DCA was a disaster in planning, building and executing. You have to go back to the design of the "Frankenstein" of an amusement park that is called DCA, to get an answer to your question. Or at least knowing more about the creation of the monster gives you a better understanding.

    DCA was created with 3 "Districts":

    Hollywood
    Paradise Pier
    and then ALL the rest of California was to be represented in the remaining District.

    And THAT is why so much of DCA is so disjointed

    Paradise Pier ended up with two two prominent designs:
    Boardwalk - an older style oceanside carnival/boardwalk
    Route 66 - to represent some of the roadside attractions (like the largest ball of string)

    Hollywood District - With the Hyperion Theater, Soap Opera Bistro, Superstar Limo, Muppets 3D, and the Animation Builidng. (The person who managed the Animation building is one of the last people brought into the DCA project, and I think she did one of the best jobs in the back lot. ) (They almost immediately started building Who Wants to be a Millionaire affter DCA Opened), so they had TV shows (soap opera bistro), game shows (millionaire), a stage production about Disney Movies in the Hyperion, and the Animation department representing Hollywood, along with a Hot Dog walk up window, and the Hollywood and Dine. So, Hollywood was really the one area of DCA that was the most coherent. Surprisingly, there have been more changes in the Hollywood Section, than anywhere else in DCA.

    AND that leave the rest of California to be represented in one final area. Of course, that just was not possible, and they had to represent several different things in the Golden State District. Of course this area had to tie EVERYTHING together, the hotel, and DCA, so with the design of Disney's Grand Californian Hotel, they would show off California's Parks and thus,

    GRR and Redwood Creek Challenge Trail were born.
    Condor Flats was born as a way to represent the Deserts of California, which turned into a desert airport, of sorts, and when they started doing research on Californian aviation history, they knew they had to bring that into Soarin'/

    The Entry area of DCA was one of the most challenging aspects of DCA. How would they represent California at the front gate? What iconic symbol could represent the park and be an icon and weenie for this entrance? Even the imagineers who designed DCA admitted that this was really the most difficult area to design. Of course we all know how that turned out, using the Sun as a Califonia centerpiece, and reflectors built around that hub, so that natural sunshine would always be reflecting on the metal sun icon. They also ran into an issue with how to disguise the monorail track and thus the Golden Gate Bridge was placed there. And the CALIFORNIA Letters out front, to make it look like one of the old fashioned post cards. The mural on both sides of the entry was so you could walk into the postcard, basically a dumping ground for all the rest of California.

    The food tours, restaurants all tried to be part of the remaining area, which included San Francisco and the Pacific Wharf. Tried to place the candy factory in San Francisco (but they never could finalize that tour) with Golden Dreams , Using the side of GRR seemed a natural place for the Vineyard and those restaurants, and the Short movie. An entertianment stage area was a natural for the food court area featuring a variety of foods, And for the Wharf area, they wanted the aged weathered look on those buildings.

    Now, after that was all planned out and space allocated, Michael Eisner looked at the whole thing and said, we are missing a VERY important Portion of the California Story ~ Farms! California is the largest producer of all these different kinds of produce, and we need a farm in DCA. So they asked ME how large the farm should be, and then they had to find a way to shoehorn in the farm. And being that ALL the space had already been allocated elsewhere, they had to take away space from other areas of DCA. About the same time as they were adding the farm, and trying to figure out how the farm should be represented, Bug's Life had opened in Animal Kingdom, and they said, THAT's what we need in DCA, and Bug's will fit into the Farm, because there are bugs on farms.

    So, THAT is why DCA is the way it is. Of course, that's no excuse for all it's problems, BUT it is basically the story about why it is the way it is. It's just not easy to explain the Pacific Wharf without explaining how the whole park was layed out and designed.

    I did go to special DCA preview in January 2001, with a panel of the Imagineers who worked on all of DCA, and that's the basis of what I've explained. It is interesting to note, each of the Imagineers, was asked if they could add one more thing to each of the areas they were responsible for, what would they like to see, some of those answers included
    "Tower of Terror", which DCA now has,
    "A Big Snazzy Water Fountain, with all sort of Fancy nozzles and effects for the San Francisco area" and of course they are working on a huge water show for Paradise Pier,
    "Some sort of attraction to represent automobiles, because of the traffic, and everyone needs a vehicle in California" and of course Carsland is on its way. so it really sounds like they always had in mind to do some sort of Test Track attraction for DCA
    Someone also mentioned that they would like to see something in DCA to Represent Silicon Valley, as that is an important part of California history. So that is part of DCA that is still missing.

  12. #12

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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    As stated earlier the Wharf is not a land but an area in the land of "Golden State"

    I enjoy the tours and especially the beer truck, they serve beer, and does the area need any other justification?

    I think the themeing of the area is spot on to represent Cannery Row in Monterey.
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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    Great post Aladdin^^. Reminds us of what could have been but poor planning and cost cutting got us what currently needs a 1.1 billion dollar upgrade.

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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    Aladdin pretty much said what I wanted to say. And what I find most hilarious is to even have a section called GOLDEN STATE when the entire park is called CALIFORNIA ADVENTURE anyway! hahah! It's a bit redundant yes no? (i said that like Don Karnage from Tail Spin)


    So yes, if treated as individual lands, then there really is no point to it. But it does look nice doesn't it? And attractions: Bakery Tour, Mission Tortilla Factory... not much of what I consider true attractions.


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    Re: What is the point of the DCA Pafiic Wharf?

    Aladdin-

    Thanks for the details, that was basically the point I was making as well, but you had a few details specifically about the point at which the farm and the bugs came into the picture that I think I'd heard but forgot about.

    Overall, I actually think that PW is one of the better designed parts of the park architecturally, so I totally understand why its on the back burner somewhat in regard to the extreme makeover. It will feel much more at home in the park once the rest of phase 1 is done. It and the Winery area look older and are actually pretty areas and once the view to outside the park are helped by RSR it will look nice. I so think that eventually it should be worked into a SF theme and get some attractions but it's pretty land locked so it will be tough. That's one of the reasons I'm not in love with the exact placement of RSR. I would have prefered they shift it over to leave more room to expand PW and actuually make it a land that could stand on its own.
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