“Imagineering” Versus Planning

“Imag­i­neer­ing” Ver­sus
Josh Stephens
Thu, 10/06/2022 — 12:00

Pri­ma­ry Image
Disneyland, main street

“On the one hand, the a shock­ing con­trast between the life­less­ness of Har­bor Bl. and the intrigue of Tomor­row, Fan­ta­sy, Adven­ture (and, of course, Adven­ture, which you appar­ent­ly vis­it if you don’t the real Cal­i­for­nia but also don’t want to leave Cal­i­for­nia).”

“On the hand, that con­trast is like­ly a fea­ture, not a bug. Dis­ney­land came about pre­cise­ly at the peak of and, I would argue, because of mid-20th sub­ur­ban­iza­tion. As the was becom­ing delib­er­ate­ly dull and homoge­nous in the late 1950s, a place of excite­ment, escape, and, indeed, ersatz urban­ism became more mar­ketable. Dis­ney­land pro­mot­ed sub­ur­ban­iza­tion in order to offer an to sub­ur­ban­iza­tion. The ugli­er [Ana­heim] is, and the less pleas­ant that walk is, the more excit­ing those oth­er ‑lands become.”

“Dis­ney­land is nicer than the real world. Peo­ple are will­ing to pay for nice, even for only a few hours. That’s because, for much of recent his­to­ry, in the vast major­i­ty of places, the imag­i­na­tion and tal­ent has been pri­va­tized, fund­ed, and pro­mot­ed, and the pub­lic realm has, in too many cas­es, been neglect­ed, starved, and vil­i­fied. The pub­lic realm does­n’t get near­ly the sort of atten­tion and invest­ment as even a few dozen acres of pri­vate realm.”

Social / Demo­graph­ics
Urban Devel­op­ment


Cal­i­for­nia Plan­ning & Devel­op­ment Report
Pub­li­ca­tion Date
Mon, 10/03/2022 — 12:00

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