Disney's Secret Land Grab

A new book details how Walt Disney secretly secured the land for Walt Disney World in Florida, and created a special district of his own to give the company unprecedented control over the area.

Sam Genneway reviews the new book PROJECT FUTURE: The Inside Story Behind the Creation of Disney World. by Chad Denver Emerson. The book explains how Disney created the Reedy Creek Improvement District, which continues to control much of what happens today in the special district.

Genneway writes, "...the unique form of government has proven to be a success for more than 40 years. In most parts of the country, the basic infrastructure systems are managed by Special Districts. These quasi-public/private Special Districts are an efficient way to maintain water and sewer systems, flood control facilities, and other public uses. The original idea for Disney was simply to create a special district to deal with drainage issues. Throughout the years, the level of authority had grown tremendously with the District covering virtually everything but schools."

Full Story: Book Review: Project Future



This is interseting

This is an interesting topic. However, the review doesn't reveal much re how this was a secret land grab.

It's important to know how land was used before these sort of development projects, esp. to learn how it could have been done in a more enviro. and socially responsible manner.

Thank you for the comment.

Thank you for the comment. I just added a paragraph that highlights the secret process used to acquire the land. Many of Samland's readers know that as a basic fact and I forgot that this may be read by a wider audience. The land itself was undeveloped and not managed in a comprehensive manner. The infrastructure developed by the Reedy Creek Improvement District has benefited the entire region with a series of managed wetlands.

Sam Gennawey

Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $199
Planetizen Courses image ad

Planetizen Courses

Advance your career with subscription-based online courses tailored to the urban planning professional.
Starting at $14.95 a month
Red necktie with map of Boston

Tie one on to celebrate your city

Choose from over 20 styles of neckties imprinted with detailed city or transit maps.
Women's t-shirt with map of Los Angeles

City T-Shirts for the ladies!

Women's Supersoft CityFabric© Fashion Fit Tees. Now available in six different cities.