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The Big Debate: Would Walt Disney be proud of Epcot?

Epcot

It's Epcot's 30th birthday on October 1, 2012. To celebrate this special event we are asking the question - would Walt Disney be proud of Epcot?

Walt Disney originally envisioned Epcot as something very different to what is has actually evolved into. But is this a good or bad outcome? Disney's dream was for Epcot to be a utopian city in which people lived and worked developing the technologies of the future. It was never meant as just another theme park.

After Walt's death in 1966 the plans for Epcot were scaled down. The park's name derives from Walt's original title - the Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow (EPCOT). This isn't what became reality. But does the current park maintain enough of the essence of the original vision to be considered a success?

The main feature that makes Epcot stand out from other theme parks around the world is the unique World Showcase. The sprawling area surrounding the lake hosts pavilions that represent countries from all around the world, like a permanent World's Fair. It offers guests a taste of going on a round the world trip, being immersed in the architecture, culture and cuisine of numerous countries all within walking distance of each other. These pavilions combine a range of 3D experiences, rides and attractions.

The rest of the theme park has an appropriate focus on futuristic attractions, such as Test Track and Mission: Space. Although some of these are now somewhat out of date, the essence of EPCOT as a showcase for future technologies and developments still holds true.

Would Walt Disney's vision of EPCOT being a living and working city ever have really worked? The funds and partners needed for a project of that magnitude may have been a step too far even for the global Disney corporation. Or would they? Could EPCOT have lived up to Walt Disney's original dreams? Was that ever a possibility?

Vote now!

Although walt's original plans have not become reality, Epcot still embraces his aims of celebrating international culture and showcasing cutting-edge technology. Let us know if you think Walt Disney would be proud of Epcot by voting in our poll below.

Would Walt Disney be proud of Epcot?

Share your thoughts

Thanks for voting in Theme Park Tourist's Big Debate. Why not let us know why you voted as you did using the comments section below?


There are 4 comments.

no. it is basically a giant bunch of overpriced tacky souvenir shops and food courts

Nah, no way is the park a prototype for any community. Not what he imagined. Would not have happened this way if Walt was alive back then.

As a theme park, good as an EPCOT propper, NOPE.

I love EPCOT because it's my favorite theme Park and I love to see the change of the new Test Track!

I like to think that Walt would have been proud of Epcot. Although its not the prototype 'living community' that he envisaged, it has given both pleasure and a 'glimpse into future technologies', to the many millions of people who have visited.
The bottom line is that Walt was a showman. He appreciated that the first rule was to keep people entertained but to also introduce education through fun and I think that central premise still remains within Epcot if you look hard. Personally I love Epcot - no visit to WDW would be complete without it!

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