Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1

    • MiceAge Columnist
    • Curator of Yesterland
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    971

    December 18, 2009: WESTCOT Center and the Original Disneyland Resort, Part 2

    Urban planner Sam Gennawey takes you on a tour of the future Disneyland Resort, as envisioned in 1991. WESTCOT Center is just one of the ambitious additions planned for Anaheim. This is part 2 of a 2-part article.


    Please discuss it here.
    Werner Weiss
    Curator of Yesterland, featuring discontinued Disneyland attractions

  2. #2

    • Banned User
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Riverside, California
    Posts
    302

    Re: December 18, 2009: WESTCOT Center and the Original Disneyland Resort, Part 2

    Thank you, that was very informative. While the project seemed like a great concept, it would have been a nightmare in execution. Disney couldn't convince investors so of course their first instinct was to knock on the door of the man who robbed the tax payer, that too thankfully failed. The People mover tram system and expanded monorail are still ideas that I think could be implemented at a relatively low cost. Maybe Disney could put a paypal account up and ask for donations... I'll give a dollar.

    Naturally, the concept is still very attractive, especially after Disney's California Adventure was spawned out of the asphalt. Hopefully the billion dollar makeover will make up for the failure. In the scale of things, the first 10 years of Disneyland were not the brightest either, and so I doubt the first decade of operations at DCA will weigh much in our minds 20-30 years down the road. If we want to remember, we can go to yesterland!

  3. #3

    • Frustrated A/V Engineer
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Dallas
    Posts
    3,344

    Re: December 18, 2009: WESTCOT Center and the Original Disneyland Resort, Part 2

    Thanks again for a very interesting article. I was really surprised and sorry to hear of Odetics' involvement with derailing of the original plan. My uncle was one of the 6 founding members of that company, so I feel very attached to it. But then I can understand a company owner not wanting Disney to pull "eminent domain" and just steamroll right over the company that he built from the ground up.

  4. #4

    • All-American
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Indiana, 1719 miles from DL
    Posts
    1,896

    Re: December 18, 2009: WESTCOT Center and the Original Disneyland Resort, Part 2

    Interesting article! I agree with Sklar's sentiment that the WestCOT concept wasn't the strongest one, and merely a retread of what was already done, and should only ever be done, at WDW. But I also wish the original park idea that had sprung WestCOT's ashes/the parking lot's asphalt was a little stronger, as well, or at least had tried harder to match Sklar's description of a "dream California." Fortunately, it sounds like that is just what DCA 2.0 is getting, with Buena Vista Street, the new Paradise Pier, and hopefully Hollywoodland.

    I also agree that scaling back the hotel room number was a wise idea, after the catastrophe EuroDisney had with occupency. Apparently even today Disneyland hotel occupancy is not quite high enough to merit huge expansion, as it hasn't happened yet (save for the GCH DVC villas).

    Would have loved to see the full Disneyland Plaza, though!


  5. #5

    • враг народа
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    13,990
    Blog Entries
    3

    Re: December 18, 2009: WESTCOT Center and the Original Disneyland Resort, Part 2

    One aspect of WESTCOT that I think a lot of critics of Disney's California Adventure ignore is that SpaceStation Earth was going to be 300' tall. People complained about being able to see the Hollywood Tower Hotel from inside Disneyland, especially parts of Main Street. Could you imagine a 300' gold sphere sitting directly behind Main Street Station when viewed from within the park? The sphere would probably be visible from elsewhere inside Disneyland too.

  6. #6

    • Minion
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    2,543

    Re: December 18, 2009: WESTCOT Center and the Original Disneyland Resort, Part 2

    Quote Originally Posted by MarkTwain View Post
    also agree that scaling back the hotel room number was a wise idea, after the catastrophe EuroDisney had with occupency. Apparently even today Disneyland hotel occupancy is not quite high enough to merit huge expansion, as it hasn't happened yet (save for the GCH DVC villas).
    The hotel issue at Disneyland Paris was due to the excessive opening of hotels without ANY local amenities (restaurants, clubs, shopping, etc.). The park closed at 6:00 pm and the RER to Pairs had it's last run from the park at 6:00 pm. So, essentially, anyone staying at only of the DLP hotels were stuck there unless they wanted to drive into Paris.

    Today's DL Resort hotel shortcomings are most likely due to DCA's poor performance. If they had developed the Westcot version, there is a good chance that they wouldn't be having occupancy problems.

  7. #7

    • Member
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    167

    Re: December 18, 2009: WESTCOT Center and the Original Disneyland Resort, Part 2

    I too agree with Marty Sklar. WESTCOT had already been there done that. EPCOT was having problems keeping people entertained at WDW. The DLR's high local attendance patterns would have doomed the park. Many attractions at EPCOT are still once a decade rides to me. WESTCOT would have been the wrong solution. DCA was not a stroke of genius by any means, but the idea was to do something different. If they had just made it Disney quality from the start...

    I do wish some of the resort ideas from WESTCOT had made it to reality. People movers from the parking structure for instance. Anything that can automate that experience and remove inefficient cast members would be a welcomed relief to me!
    "Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere." --Carl Sagan

  8. #8

    • Park Wanderer #1337
    • Offline

    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    21

    Re: December 18, 2009: WESTCOT Center and the Original Disneyland Resort, Part 2

    When my Dad worked at Disneyland I remember reading a Line that featured a tall spire replacing Spaceship Earth. Anybody else remember that?

  9. #9

    • All-American
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Indiana, 1719 miles from DL
    Posts
    1,896

    Re: December 18, 2009: WESTCOT Center and the Original Disneyland Resort, Part 2

    Quote Originally Posted by LAZ-E View Post
    When my Dad worked at Disneyland I remember reading a Line that featured a tall spire replacing Spaceship Earth. Anybody else remember that?
    Yes, this is actually true! When the people that lived around the Disneyland Resort first heard of the details for the plan of WestCOT, they greatly protested the idea of being able to see a brightly-illuminated, 300-foot sphere from their house. (In architecture/urban planning, we call this a "NIMBY" or "Not in My Backyard" reaction.) So, the Imagineers came up with the idea of a golden spire instead. Some later concept art even depicts this:



    In fact, this idea for a spire even carried over into the earliest concepts for DCA:



  10. #10

    • New Member
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    1

    Re: December 18, 2009: WESTCOT Center and the Original Disneyland Resort, Part 2

    I think Westcot would have been a spectacular and worthy counterpart to Disneyland. As a re-imagined version of the most interesting part of Walt Disney World, it, along with the visionary Resort update plans, would have made for a truly well-rounded multi-day Disney experience in Anaheim. I could certainly do without an intrusive gold sphere viewable from Disneyland, that sounds like the one wrong note in the entire initial Resort concept. But the rest of the new park could have been a viable destination in itself, something I think DCA may never achieve.

    For those who feel that Westcot would have been an unwelcome retread of EPCOT, I can only assume they hold similar reservations about the other Magic Kingdoms which followed Disneyland's formula.

  11. #11

    • Park Wanderer #1337
    • Offline

    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    21

    Re: December 18, 2009: WESTCOT Center and the Original Disneyland Resort, Part 2

    I've never seen the art of DCA w/the spire, that's pretty cool. The base of it looks a little like the hub cap that's there now.

    I too like most of the ideas in Westcot, especially the use of Monorails and Peoplemovers. That last part of the day walking back through Downtown Disney and the parking structure would feel much better sitting down. I also like how its design leans more towards adult than kiddie.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 12
    Last Post: 03-04-2010, 08:47 PM
  2. [Trip Report] Disneyland in the rain! December 12, 2009 Trip Report
    By Alice in Wonderland in forum Disneyland Resort
    Replies: 41
    Last Post: 12-17-2009, 11:20 PM
  3. Replies: 16
    Last Post: 12-15-2009, 07:26 PM
  4. [Question] What were the original cities selected for the Disneyland Resort
    By disneyboi92 in forum Disneyland Resort
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 09-24-2008, 09:49 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •