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  1. #16

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    Re: News: Size of Shanghai Disney Resort released, RTHK News

    You don't need much more than 100, certainly not more than 150 acres, to build a Magic Kingdom park. That plus an extra 100 - 150 is quite sufficient for a Disney resort at the beginning. We should be more concerned with quality than total acreage. WDW is by far the largest resort...but quite possibly is too large, creating great distances between hotels and parks and making commuting between them a bit of a hassle. Shanghai DL will probably get Phase 2 and 3 in due course...and the final resort size should be something akin to that of Disneyland Paris (which I think is just the right size). Also let's all remember that these lands are lived on by farming families and others who will get uprooted on account of the resort. They will have to be compensated and will have to find new homes. The government is likely trying to minimize how much population displacement occurs at one time, and that is probably a good thing.
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  2. #17

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    Re: News: Size of Shanghai Disney Resort released, RTHK News

    The first rule in reading these reports is to remember that with respect to the definitions and usage of words like "park", "resort", "attraction", "on-stage", "back stage", etc. there is an enormous disconnect between the general public/media - be it Chinese or American - and the Cognoscenti on these boards.

    If you tell the general public the size stats of Animal Kingdom (500 acres) and Disneyland (85 acres) and nothing more, they will think that AK has 5x as many things to do.

    The media consistently compares apples to oranges and this latest report is no different.

    ****

    To clear through some of the latest information here are some resort/park sizes in hectares:

    Disneyland Paris Resort: 1,943 ha
    DLP Park On-Stage: 51
    WDSP On-Stage: 25

    Tokyo Disney Resort: 200 ha
    TDL Park On-Stage/Parking & Back-Stage: 50/30
    TDS Park On-Stage/Parking & Back-Stage: 48/23

    Hong Kong Disneyland Resort: 126 ha (not including 2nd park landfill)
    HKDL Park On-Stage: 22
    HKDL Park On-Stage after 3 new lands: 27

    Shanghai Disney Resort: 400-800 ha unconfirmed
    Shanghai Disneyland Phase One: 116 ha

    Since there was no mention of hotels in that 116, I would assume that the number most comparable to this would be Tokyo Disneyland's 80 ha, which includes on-stage/backstage areas of TDL park as well as parking for that park. This would mean the Shanghai Disneyland park at opening would be significantly larger than TDL park - something quite possible if it includes a large body of water as rumored.

    The Chinese are not about to get fooled twice into underbuilding in Shanghai.
    Last edited by RandySavage; 11-24-2009 at 04:51 PM.

  3. #18

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    Re: News: Size of Shanghai Disney Resort released, RTHK News

    Does underbuilding serve like an extended soft opening? IE get some rides running, start charging admission, have a few slow years and test market guest reactions, then fill in what's needed with Phase II budgets?

    I don't know that this isn't the new Disney "way".

  4. #19

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    Re: News: Size of Shanghai Disney Resort released, RTHK News

    well, as long as it is not smaller, attraction amount, I think it will be fine. I just would rather have a larger park with not many attractions, but lots of detail. We'll see I guess... hopefully it will have some unique rides and lands, but not "Toy Story Land", Cars Autopia, Marvel Future land, etc

  5. #20

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    Re: News: Size of Shanghai Disney Resort released, RTHK News

    Quote Originally Posted by CaliforniaAdventurer View Post
    Does underbuilding serve like an extended soft opening? IE get some rides running, start charging admission, have a few slow years and test market guest reactions, then fill in what's needed with Phase II budgets?

    I don't know that this isn't the new Disney "way".
    How do you know that SHDL will be anything less than a full scale park? Is nearly 300 acres somehow insufficient for that?
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  6. #21

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    Re: News: Size of Shanghai Disney Resort released, RTHK News

    I'm asking if they'll get 1/2 the rides up and running and then start selling admission tickets. Why not? Clamoring public will pay, and pay again to come back when the full park is open. Just curious, not saying it's right.

  7. #22

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    Re: News: Size of Shanghai Disney Resort released, RTHK News

    The other land in Shanghai is reserved so they can build a pirated Magic Kingdom Park next to it and charge just 10% of the original Magic Kingdom.

  8. #23

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    Re: News: Size of Shanghai Disney Resort released, RTHK News

    Quote Originally Posted by CaliforniaAdventurer View Post
    Does underbuilding serve like an extended soft opening? IE get some rides running, start charging admission, have a few slow years and test market guest reactions, then fill in what's needed with Phase II budgets?

    I don't know that this isn't the new Disney "way".
    That's been exactly the Disney "way" under late Eisner/Pressler, and it's been a financial disappointment each time they've done it (with the exception of MGM). So while they get the turnstyles clicking in these "soft openings", I think the medium- & long-term financial success of the investment is much better served by building a park that actually satisfies paying guests from day 1.


    Shanghai is the first park under the new management who have hopefully learned that opening underwhelming parks with little to do is not a recipe for success. Then you have the Shanghai government, majority stakeholders, who know exactly why HKDL hasn't drawn target numbers (not enough to do).

    I'm confident that the park will be a full-day park on opening (similar to opening day IoA, Universal Osaka or 1982 TDL), with a level of theming & detail on par with HKDL (but not as lavish as TDS or DLP).

    My hope is that, in a strategic decision, Management will choose not to clone a single attraction/building (not even Dumbo) from HKDL - and so provide two distinct theme parks for the Chinese to visit.
    Last edited by RandySavage; 11-24-2009 at 06:56 PM.

  9. #24

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    Re: News: Size of Shanghai Disney Resort released, RTHK News

    Don't hold your breath Randy.

    If the next project was Disneyland Paris, Id share your optimism but, considering the audience Naraland will do. China is not the US East Coast, Europe or Japan.

    Hate to say it but cheap knock offs are the norm, extensive detailing may be lost and a Six Flags Over Shanghai might have delivered more to the Chinese audience c. 2010.

  10. #25

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    Re: News: Size of Shanghai Disney Resort released, RTHK News

    ^^ China is a developing country. Cheap kickoffs may be the norm, but at some stage in a country's development they are necessary due to what the people are able to afford and manage at that point in time. That doesn't mean that people do not desire, or would be unable to appreciate, something better. For instance in China today you will find today plenty of shoddy construction but next to that, architecture and infrastructure of the highest caliber.

    Personally my expectations are similar to those of Randy's. Not TDS-high but high enough. And I hope to see it person myself some day.
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  11. #26

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    Re: News: Size of Shanghai Disney Resort released, RTHK News

    Here are a few news articles from South China Morning Post which is the leading english newspaper in HK (where I live):

    It's a small Disney after all for Shanghai
    Beijing approves scaled-down park smaller than HK's

    So much for best laid plans of mice and men: after being billed as the mother of all theme parks, Shanghai's new Disneyland will be the smallest yet.

    The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), the central government's top planning agency, has announced that the park will be 116 hectares - less than a third of the size most pundits had predicted. This will make it smaller than Hong Kong Disneyland, which covers 126 hectares and is currently the smallest of the US entertainment giant's five parks worldwide.

    In stark contrast to the triumphal manner in which the project's long-awaited approval was reported three weeks ago, the official confirmation of the park's small size led local media to openly take the Mickey.

    "Really Minnie! Shanghai Disneyland will be even smaller than Hong Kong Disney" screamed the headline on yesterday's Xinmin Evening News. Shanghai residents were ambivalent about the news yesterday.

    "I believe it is pointless to build a Disney park in Shanghai," said Coco Wang, an employee of a Japanese company. "The city's construction boom for the World Expo and for the city's international profile is going on at the expense of people. We are suffering more traffic jams and pollution."

    The Shanghai government's announcement three weeks ago that the project - which has been on the drawing board for a decade - had been given the go-ahead, sparked concerns in Hong Kong about the impact competition could have.

    It was widely reported by Shanghai's official media at the time that the first phase of the project would cover an area of more than four square kilometres (400 hectares) - more than three times the size of the Hong Kong site.

    The first phase was to be completed sometime around 2013 or 2014, and later stages of construction were expected to expand the site to more than 10 sq km.

    The new figures suggest those initial Hong Kong concerns about competition may have been unfounded.

    However, an official with the Pudong district government, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the 116 hectares mentioned in the NDRC's brief statement released on Monday was just for the first-phase of construction.

    He said this would be followed by second and third phases of development, and Shanghai's Disneyland would eventually be larger than its Hong Kong counterpart.

    "Some details of the park are not finalised yet," he told the South China Morning Post (SEHK: 0583, announcements, news) . "Space for the project will definitely be expanded."

    The information office under the NDRC could not be reached for comment by telephone yesterday.

    A brief statement issued by Walt Disney Company's head office on November 3 made no mention of the project's size, but stated that "final agreement" had yet to be reached. It also hinted that the project would be completed in several stages.

    "The project's initial phase would include a Magic Kingdom-style theme park with characteristics tailored to the Shanghai region and other amenities consistent with Disney's destination resorts worldwide," the company said.

    The largest of the Disney parks is Walt Disney World in Florida, at 10,117 hectares. EuroDisney, outside Paris, comes a distant second, covering 1,942 hectares. Both Disneyland in California and Tokyo's Disney Resort are about 200 hectares.

    The land allocation has raised concerns the Shanghai park could run into troubles similar to those that plagued Hong Kong Disneyland when it first opened. Lack of size was widely cited as a reason for its disappointing ticket sales.

    But Dr John Ap, an associate professor of tourism at Hong Kong Polytechnic University, said the initial compact size could help maintain the ambiance and theme of the Disney park, which was important for attracting tourists. It was the number of attractions at the park, rather than its size, that was critical, he added.

    The mainland's amusement park market is already highly competitive with large parks having sprung up around most major cities.

    A recent study by consultancy firm Horizon Group found that about 150 billion yuan (HK$170 billion) had been invested in about 2,500 mainland theme parks, but only one in 10 of them was making a profit and 70 per cent were in the red.

    The new slimline plan for Shanghai Disneyland means it won't be able to rely on sheer scale to get visitors through the gates.

    The Disney park will be smaller than Shanghai's largest public park, Century Park in Pudong, which covers 140 hectares. The city's largest amusement park is the newly opened Shanghai Happy Valley in the western suburb of Sheshan. But at 90 hectares, it is slightly smaller than the proposed Disney park.

    But there are larger parks elsewhere in China, both already open and currently being built.

    There were several media reports in June of plans to build a 133 hectare park in Huzhou , Zhejiang province, dedicated to the Japanese cartoon character Hello Kitty.

    Hong Kong's Ocean Park covers 212 hectares, almost double the size of the Shanghai Disney, and Honey Lake China Amusement Park in Shenzhen covers 214 hectares.

    These all pale in comparison with Shenzhen's vast Interlaken theme resort. Styled after a Swiss Alpine resort, it covers 890 hectares.

    Source: China News Headlines | Hong Kong's premier newspaper online | SCMP.com

    Is a small start for Disney just a big ploy?
    Magic Kingdom's final size still not known

    How big Shanghai Disneyland will ultimately become remains a pressing question, after Beijing announced that only 116 hectares had been reserved for the city's long-coveted theme park.

    The announcement raised eyebrows, as the space represents only a quarter of the 4 sq km, or 400 hectares, reported when Shanghai unveiled its plan for the mega project three weeks ago.

    So officially, Shanghai Disneyland will be smaller than its Hong Kong rival, which covers 126 hectares. But as time goes by, Shanghai could become the biggest.

    Two Shanghai government officials with the knowledge of the matter said that the statement by the National Development and Reform Commission referred only to the first phase of construction, and that there would be future expansion.

    Admitting that details of the project had yet to be finalised, one Pudong district government official said that the Shanghai park would definitely outgrow its Hong Kong counterpart.

    It may boil down to tactics that the mainland is adopting to nurture the growth of its own Magic Kingdom.

    First, the central government and Shanghai municipality have yet to allay concerns of a bitter rivalry between Shanghai and Hong Kong as they up the ante to vie for tourists.

    It is a middle road that Shanghai appears to be taking, to steady Hong Kong nerves and demonstrate effusive goodwill after Li Bincheng, a division director of the city's tourism administration, made upbeat remarks in August that the densely populated China market could sustain even three Disney theme parks.

    It is believed that Shanghai's park, set to open in 2014, will eventually cover 10 sq km, after second- and third-phase expansions.

    A Shanghai-based political analyst, who asked not to be identified, said: "It's another game of politics. Beijing definitely has its reasons to understate the size of the first phase."

    Second, Beijing has to play down fears of an invasion of Western culture, after a group of scholars and government officials lodged complaints that the landing of Mickey Mouse would give full play to the United States' entertainment industry in China, denting the growth of homegrown companies and eroding the country's cultural heritage.

    Analysts said the mainland was taking a go-slow approach to build Shanghai Disneyland, as it considered the potential damage to the domestic entertainment sector.

    It was reported that the Ministry of Culture objected to the building of the park last year when the central government reviewed Shanghai's proposal for the multibillion-yuan project.

    Third, Shanghai has stepped up efforts to cool the red-hot property market amid frenzied land and home purchases, as the news of the park heightened people's expectations of soaring property prices.

    On November 4, when Shanghai officially announced its plan to build a Disney theme park, a parcel of land three kilometres from the Disney site was sold at 14,024 yuan (HK$15,935) per square metre in an auction, nearly quadruple what land authorities had targeted.

    A wild price gain for Disneyland-related stocks has also panicked officials, with the Shanghai government and the China Securities Regulatory Commission fearing a boom-to-bust cycle when profit-taking sets in.

    The Jielong Industry Group, which owns a parcel of land near the Disney site, now trades at more than 500 times its earnings for last year. The average price-to-earnings multiple among Shanghai-listed firms stood at 28 yesterday.

    And the Shanghai government could go it alone by expanding the construction site without Beijing's approval.

    An economist close to the city government said: "It wouldn't be a surprise if Shanghai took a bold step to unilaterally expand the size of the park, since there remain policy loopholes for the city to take advantage of.

    "The city government would say the expanded space is for the related projects such as hotels and commercial buildings."

    Source:China News Headlines | Hong Kong's premier newspaper online | SCMP.com

    Shanghai's caution gives our Disneyland a break

    Well, Shanghai's Disney Park will be even smaller than the one in Hong Kong.
    Remember all the hoopla in Shanghai about how big it was going to be? The future park will, in fact, be the smallest Disneyland in the world - 70 per cent smaller than originally reported and 10 hectares smaller than the 126 hectare park at Penny's Bay. Our giant competitor from the north has turned out to be a dwarf. Hong Kong officials will certainly heave a sigh of relief. But it would be wrong to let down our guard.

    Given the huge area of land in Shanghai that surrounds the site for the future park, it was natural for people to assume a giant park was being planned. Its actual size, announced yesterday, came as a surprise. No clear official explanation was given. Perhaps Beijing wants to balance the interests between our two cities and give Hong Kong Disneyland more of a fighting chance. More likely, mainland authorities are worried about how difficult it is to operate a Disney theme park successfully in light of the problems encountered in Hong Kong. It may also be that Shanghai had, all along, been far more enthusiastic about the project than the central government. The new government in Shanghai, which followed the purge of former Shanghai party boss Chen Liangyu and his clique for corruption last year, clearly has its own agenda regarding Disney.

    Whatever the reason, Shanghai has chosen a cautious approach in the joint venture with Disney. But it clearly has the option and resources to expand the theme park into a much bigger one, so we should not assume the size announced yesterday will be the final one. Shanghai Disney has created a sense of crisis in Hong Kong; let's capitalise on it. Our city has just been given a break. Now we need to work on strengthening the attractions at our Disney to make it a success. Clearly, the two parks will be in competition. Hong Kong officials keep saying the mainland, with its large population, has room for two or even more Disneylands. But this is more a prayer than a plan. Let's have a plan unveiled to make our Disneyland work - and be a park we can all be proud of.

    Source:China News Headlines | Hong Kong's premier newspaper online | SCMP.com

    It's nice to see finally someone who is compassionate about HKDL in this usually bitter newspaper.

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