Monday, August 1, 2011

Long Beach DisneySea

Take one part Discovery Cove, one part Sea World, two parts EPCOT and three parts DisneySea, mix them together and you have my vision of the proposed DisneySea park that was to be a part of the massive Port Disney development proposed for Long Beach.   Others have told the story of Port Disney better than I could hope to (I recommend ProgressCity for a very in-depth article with lots of big photos), so the focus of this post will be my version of the DisneySea  park.

I based this drawing off the preliminary site plans (which had very little detail of the park itself), the write-ups and – mostly – the big overview concept art.  As you will see, the front of the park follows the artwork pretty closely.  As things moved toward the horizon in the painting and become less discernable, I had to employ a lot of creative license.

WORLDPORT: The entry plaza and land takes the form of a variety of seaside pavilions from the 1880-1930 time period.  The monorail connects the park to the multiple hotels and other venues of the much larger Port Disney property.

PORT HOTEL: The hotel closest to the theme park is in the Spanish Mission/Hacienda style with lots of landscaping and water features.

 OCEANA: The famed giant aquarium spheres would have been an engineering marvel – and likely far too expensive to ever build – I imagine this facility housing a dark ride (maybe the one originally planned for The Living Seas as well as an FX theater and levels of exhibits.   The monorail station is within the complex.  One of the more quixotic elements of the park are the wavy, semi-elevated platforms that lead up to the Spheres.   I’m not exactly sure what the intent was, but I’ve assumed they are futuristic aqueducts above a tide pool-like garden/trail zone.

FUTURE RESEARCH STATION: This is an extension of Oceana, hosting actual marine scientific research as well as arctic and reef habitats.  I put in a future-themed undersea simulator, as well.

PACIFICA PARK: This area (my name) is featured clearly in the art but never mentioned in all the write-ups I’ve seen.  I imagine this to be an area that competes with Sea World, with an aquatic stunt theatre and a marine mammal aquatic theatre.  There is a large surf pool (bring your bathing suit) as well as parks for relaxing/picnicking.  

VENTURE REEFS: This area is similar in concept to Discovery Bay, devoted to very close encounters with all sorts of sea creatures, including separate lagoons for dolphins, manatees, and rays.  The highlight would be the cage dive with man-eating sharks.  

FLEETS OF FANTASY: This area houses the kid-friendly rides aboard a variety of vessels from different regions and time-periods.  Interestingly, in the most recent WDI  book there is an illustration of this concept that was revived for a proposed expansion of Tokyo DisneySea.

HEROES HARBOR: This area is about legends of the sea – Middle Eastern, Ancient Greek, Norse, etc.  – so it is a mesh of these architectural and boat-building styles.  Sinbad is a kid-friendly boat ride (as opened with TDS in 2001) while the Ulysses attraction is a little more frightening (PotC-like with drops).  

PIRATE LAGOON: The actual park was to have a Pirates area that was supposed to be “Tom Sawyer Island x 10.”  Now I’m a big fan of TSI, so since WDI made so bold a claim, I expanded the Pirate area to an entire land.   There is the civilized, colonial port with a Royal Navy vessel docked offshore.  Across the lagoon is the dilapidated pirate fortress holding a new attraction in the PotC universe – one using LPS-guided “boats” sitting in a few inches of water – making it more E-ticket darkride rather than an indoor flume.  The Queen Anne’s Revenge is anchored in a hidden alcove.

MYSTERIOUS ISLAND: The final land takes Nemo/Vulcania mythology and throws in some Atlantis in.


So this park, like my WestCOT drawing, is part puzzle-piecing, part conjecture, mostly just fun,wishful thinking.


Andrew said...

This is a great buildout, thanks for sharing SWW. I really like Pirate Lagoon and Mysterious Island. Atlantis mixed in with Nemo is just superb.

Although it's sad to have never seen this park built, it's comforting to know that all ideas from WDI are never really binned. More like lost in time, waiting to be found.

megatron_85 said...

that's great!

what theme park will you come up with next?

Anonymous said...

I rather Randy do Disney-Warner Bros. Studios next.

megatron_85 said...

To Disney-Warner Bros. Studios Guy:

SWW has got more important things to do than that

SWW said...

^As I've said before, if the Disney-Warner Bros. Studios Guy is willing to take the time to hand draw the park in his mind (which I think it would be a fulfilling experience for him), I'd consider doing it.

megatron_85 said...

Mr. Wilson, ever thought of creating a book full of your theme park ideas?

Magic Lamp said...

I've always wondered what this park would contain. It looks pretty neat. Wasn't there an actual port planned from where the Disney cruises would start? Unless I'm blind... I can't see it.

Your variation, however, seems to fit the original drawing to the tee... you have an excellent eye for that.

On another note; you once made your version of SDL before the concept art came out. Have you shelved that or was it the basis or a variation of Worlds of Wonders?

SWW said...

^^Haven't considered a book. Maybe one day if I ever master the skills of drawing birds-eye views and park maps.

^There was a cruise ship port planned (as well as several more hotels and other attractions/facilities) for the larger Port Disney development, but it lies outside of the section I focused on (the DisneySea park zone). You can see where these would go on the very large site plans in the ProgressCity article I linked to.

Regarding Shanghai DL... I still have that one - it surrounds a very large central lagoon - inspired by that famous piece of art that came out in the 2006 Annual Report. I'll try to get to posting it, but I've done a couple MKs in a row, including yours, so I wanted to change directions a bit.

megatron_85 said...

so that leaves disney's america

comics101 said...

Very cool ideas. I like the combinations of the multiple parks...I actually don't know much about the Long Beach project and wasn't aware there was to be a resort, that'd be a cool drawing to see!
Randy, have you been removing old posts of parks you'd previously posted? I'm heading down to Universal Orlando next week, and went to look at the site plan and couldn't find it...I was extremely bummed lol. Anywho, it too was very cool fyi.
And Disney's America is coming very soon. I promise hahaha

SWW said...

^ IOA is definitely still there, as is the Alterniverse. I can't find the Universal Studios Florida post, but don't remember taking it down... not sure what happened...

Have a good time.

comics101 said...

Thanks! I've seen both of those, and I especially love's a really great idea and kind of even puts IOA to shame. That's really weird about USF though ahahaha. Oh well...

roonieone said...

Great buildout, as always! I was wondering if you had any plans to do the Epcot or Animal Kingdom proposed for the Shanghai property.

SWW said...


Regarding Shanghai EPCOT, in the longer-term, I think it would be fun to do an original 21st century take on EPCOT. Suggestions are welcome. It's interesting to think about how an EPCOT would be built today - particularly a Chinese one, as the original (great) EPCOT FW was entwined in the zeitgeist of the 1980s (faith in technology, corporate benevolence, American Exceptionalism) and today perceptions seem to be significantly different.

I'm in the early stages of putting together a "Shanghai" Animal Kingdom-like park. I put Shanghai in quotes because the park is not specifically tailored to a certain location, but could go anywhere. It's based not on continents, mythical nor prehistoric animals, but on Biomes (e.g. an Arctic land, a Rainforest land, a Desert land, a Prairie land) and not focused solely on animals - but on environments (including the human place in them).

Magic Lamp said...

Making an EPCOT center today might not prove very innovative since technology progresses quick yet not as futuristic as originally hoped, so you'd only end up with a convention center with dark rides.

I would, however, like the idea of re-tooling Future World to a sci-fi Expo showcasing future tech from anti-gravity to virtual reality, and make the World Showcase in a similar but bigger fashion as proposed in WestCOT.

Mr. Zahta said...

Great work! I'm really enjoying your blog!

I have a conceptual map I've done based on Anahein Disneyland, and I'd like to know if you can convert this conceptual drwaing into your style of maps.

SWW said...

Magic Lamp,

Interesting idea about EPCOT with a Scifi FW. I assume the sci-fi you're talking about is more of the Star Trek kind, based on "real sciences" rather than the more fantastic, less plausible Star Wars/Buck Rogers type of sci-fi. Horizons was basically in that arena - showing very far removed concepts like heavily-populated space colonies and giant floating cities...

I definitely sympathize with WDI's predicament regarding actual futurism (with regard to both technology & architecture).


Mr. Zahta,

There's a good chance I can... you can email me the plan and specifics (email in About Me section in the upper left).

Luke said...

I have a question, have you ever designed a park for just Kingdom Hearts only?

SWW said...

^No... I know Kingdom Hearts is popular and I've seen artwork for it (and included some attractions based on it in various parks) but I don't know enough about the game series to create a park about it, having never played it.