// ON E.P.C.O.T, INNOVATION & THE FUTURE


“It’s like the city of tomorrow ought to be. A city that caters to the people as a service function. It will be a planned, controlled community, a showcase for American industry and research, schools, cultural and educational opportunities.”

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“We have done a lot of thinking on a model community, and I would like to be a part of building one, a city of tomorrow, as you might say. I don’t believe in going out to this extreme blue sky stuff that some of the architects do. I believe people still want to live like human beings. But there are a lot of things that could be done. I’m not against the automobile but I just feel that you can design so that the automobile is there but still put people back as pedestrians again. I’d love to work on a project like that.”

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“But if we can bring together the technical know—how of American industry and the creative imagination of the Disney Organization—I’m confident we can create right here in Disney World a showcase to the world of the American free enterprise system.”

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“The one thing I learned from Disneyland was to control the environment. Without that we get blamed for the things that someone else does. When they come here they're coming because of an integrity that we've established over the years, and they drive for hundreds of miles and the little hotels on the fringe would jump their rates three times. I've seen it happen and I just can't take it because, I mean, it reflects on us. I just feel a responsability to the public when I go into this thing that we must control that, and when they come into this so-called world, that we will take the blame for what goes on."

Walt Disney on property, 1965.
(c) The Walt Disney Company


“Here in Florida, we have something special we never enjoyed at Disneyland... the blessing of size. There's enough land here to hold all the ideas and plans we can possibly imagine."

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I can never stand still. I must explore and experiment. I am never satisfied with my work. I resent the limitations of my own imagination.”

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“To the youngsters of today, I say believe in the future, the world is getting better; there still is plenty of opportunity. Why, would you believe it, when I was a kid I thought it was already too late for me to make good at anything.”

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“The only problem with anything of tomorrow is that at the pace we’re going right now, tomorrow would catch up with us before we got it built.”

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“People sort of live in the dark about things. A lot of young people think the future is closed to them, that everything has been done. This is not so. There are still plenty of avenues to be explored.”

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“But the most exciting and by far the most important part of our Florida project… in fact, the heart of everything we’ll be doing in Disney World… will be our Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow! We call it E.P.C.O.T. 

E.P.C.O.T will be an experimental prototype community of tomorrow that will take its cue from the new ideas and new technologies that are now emerging from the creative centers of American industry. It will be a community of tomorrow that will never be completed, but will always be introducing and testing and demonstrating new materials and systems. 

And E.P.C.O.T will always be a showcase to the world for the ingenuity and imagination of American free enterprise. I don’t believe there’s a challenge anywhere in the world that’s more important to people everywhere than finding solutions to the problems of our cities. But where do we begin… how do we start answering this great challenge? Well, we’re convinced we must start with the public need. And the need is for starting from scratch on virgin land and building a special kind of new community. 

So that’s what E.P.C.O.T is… an experimental prototype community that will always be in a state of becoming. It will never cease to be a living blueprint of the future, where people actually live a life they can’t find anywhere else in the world. Everything in E.P.C.O.T will be dedicated to the happiness of the people who will live, work, and play here… and to those who come here from all around the world to visit our living showcase. We don’t presume to know all the answers. In fact, we’re counting on the cooperation of American industry to provide their best thinking during the planning and creation of our Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow…. 

And most important of all, when E.P.C.O.T has become a reality and we find the need for technologies that don’t even exist today, it’s our hope that E.P.C.O.T will stimulate American industry to develop new solutions that will meet the needs of people expressed right here in this experimental community.”

Walt Disney on property, 1965.
(c) The Walt Disney Company

“I’ve always said there will never be another Disneyland, and I think it’s going to work out that way. But it will be the equivalent of Disneyland. We know the basic things that have family appeal. There are many ways that you can use those certain basic things and give them a new decor, anew treatment. This concept here will have to be something that is unique, so there is a distinction between Disneyland in California and whatever Disney does in Florida.”

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“The whole thing here is the organization. Whatever we accomplish belongs to our entire group, a tribute to our combined effort. Look at Disneyland. That was started because we had the talents to start it, the talents of the organization. And our World’s Fair shows—what we did was possible only because we already had the staff that had worked together for years, blending creative ideas with technical know-how.”

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“Our heritage and ideals, our code and standards the things we live by and teach our children are preserved or diminished by how freely we exchange ideas and feelings.”

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"Believe me, it's the most exciting and challenging assignment we ever tackled at Walt Disney Productions"