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PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 10:23 am 
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As many are aware, Walt's goal was to create a model, an urban society, that could continuously evolve and adapt by using new ideas, technology and solutions to deal with all the past, present and future problems that modern cities have to deal with in the real world. Both social elements like crime and unemployment, and things like noise, pollution, transportation, energy and general infrastructure.
This model was in turn meant to be used as a reference and inspiration for cities around the world to solve their own urban problems.

Today the environment has a much bigger presence in the public mind that it did back then. Global warming, recycling, locally produced food, green energy and other topics are constantly in the media these days. But you don't have many places where you can experiment with various suggestions on a large scare to see what may work or not. A small eco-village here and there perhaps, but not much of urban environments. EPCOT could have been used as a laboratory in that regard.

Walt was probably ahead of his time, and time was something he was already running out of.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 11:35 am 
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Monorails are electric (right?), and the PeopleMover is electric, so I wonder if EPCOT as Walt envisioned it would have inspired other communities around the world to implement electric public transportation...(even though they're used in the Disney parks and they haven't caught on too much outside of Disney...)

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 2:36 pm 
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Old habits die hard. And conventional cities are a little more rigid than EPCOT would have been, which was designed to be much more flexible. Or course, if anyone tried to build such a project today, Disney or someone else, it would probably pay off to make it even more flexible than the original concept.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 6:37 pm 
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Celebration, Florida could have been more EPCOT-like...They have that community to use as their EPCOT, but I don't think it's lived up to its potential...

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 8:55 am 
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I've long held the opinion that the world would be a far better place if Walt Disney had lived long enough to build his city of the future (it's one of several reasons I despise cigarettes, as Walt surely wouldn't have died in 1966 if he wasn't a frequent smoker). The plans he had for it would have helped improve the livelihoods and health of so many people and done so much good. It was a brilliant idea unfortunately cut short by one man's death.

Would anyone be willing to do something akin to Walt's EPCOT today? I don't know. You need someone with Walt's vision, optimism and forward thinking attitude to accomplish it, plus the wealth they're willing to spend on it. Walt Disney was someone who wasn't scared of risks and didn't mind spending large amounts of money to accomplish a dream, despite those who doubted him (whether it was producing "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" or building a theme park). But maybe the world has grown too cynical for such an experiment to come to fruition.

It's one reason I absolutely love Brad Bird's "Tomorrowland." It asks the question of what's preventing us from having a city like EPCOT nowadays and shows us it is possible. The cynical attitudes being foisted on the populace is what's stopping us.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 9:30 am 
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blackcauldron85 wrote:
Celebration, Florida could have been more EPCOT-like...They have that community to use as their EPCOT, but I don't think it's lived up to its potential...


I'm not that familiar with Celebration, so it's hard to say if the community is big enough to be used as a testing ground for the ideas and concepts EPCOT would allowed. But from the sound of it, Disney haven't bothered to explore its full potential yet.

estefan wrote:
Would anyone be willing to do something akin to Walt's EPCOT today? I don't know. You need someone with Walt's vision, optimism and forward thinking attitude to accomplish it, plus the wealth they're willing to spend on it. Walt Disney was someone who wasn't scared of risks and didn't mind spending large amounts of money to accomplish a dream, despite those who doubted him (whether it was producing "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" or building a theme park). But maybe the world has grown too cynical for such an experiment to come to fruition.

It's one reason I absolutely love Brad Bird's "Tomorrowland." It asks the question of what's preventing us from having a city like EPCOT nowadays and shows us it is possible. The cynical attitudes being foisted on the populace is what's stopping us.


Obviously it would require some idealist with a vision and a mission that didn't depend on begging the bean counters for money and permission all the time. If someone would be willing to fund projects like EPCOT instead of Biosphere 2, Disney would have the chance to prove for the world how much they wanted to contribute to make it a better place.
(The EPCOT we got instead was just another amusement park attraction.)


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