Best book about Disney park design?
July 27, 2008 10:44 AM   Subscribe

I want to read a book about Disney's parks, specifically, one that focuses on the parks' designs and their impact on the visitor's experience.

I'm interested in knowing more about all of Disney's design techniques, - food service, architecture, lighting, guest services, Fast Pass...etc. I'd like some insight into all the details that make their parks feel so efficient and "happy." What book should I read?
posted by davebush to Technology (5 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Team Rodent.
posted by Wet Spot at 11:04 AM on July 27, 2008

Designing Disney's Theme Parks: The Architecture of Reassurance.

But read Team Rodent, too.
posted by Sidhedevil at 11:48 AM on July 27, 2008

Designing Disney by John Hench is great, focusing a lot on architecture but looking at other design stuff, including color theory. Hench worked at Disney from 1939 up until almost the day he he died in 2004, and the book is written largely in first person. Lots of design sketches here, by Hench himself.

Walt Disney Imagineering by "The Imagineers" is good, too, with lots of big color behind-the-scenes photos. It's pretty "rah-rah," of course.

Jason Surrell's books are interesting if you want a closer look at the history of the creation of particular attractions: Haunted Mansion, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Disney's Mountain Range.

As far as Guest Services stuff goes, you might check out David Koenig's Mouse Tales and More Mouse Tales, which are mostly anecdotes about working at Disneyland by Cast Members. These are very unofficial and pretty dishy -- they're not concerned with technique, per say, but you could probably glean some useful info from them.
posted by Karlos the Jackal at 8:04 PM on July 27, 2008

I too was going to recommend The Architecture of Reassurance. It was written to supplement an art exhibition, so it has a more academic tone that a lot of other Disney books. The Imagineering Field Guides are also enjoyable.
posted by missmerrymack at 6:21 PM on July 28, 2008

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