Mouse wants exclusive link for train from Orlando airport

Posted Monday, December 16, 2002 3:50 AM | Contributed by Jeff

Florida voters approved a high-speed train to link the state's largest areas, now Disney says that if it stops at competitors parks or even the convention center, not to bring it through Disney World. The state is being pressured to meet that demand because Disney accounts for more than two million people departing from the airport every year.

Read more from The St. Petersburg Times.

Monday, December 16, 2002 3:51 AM

I think that's crap. Disney didn't approve the project, the voters did, now they're going to use their influence for their gain. I saw screw Disney and take the loss in traffic, because you can't allow a state-funded competitive advantage for them.

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com - Sillynonsense.com
DELETED!

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Monday, December 16, 2002 3:57 AM

Can you say, "we want to take baby steps to a monopoly"? How arrogant can they be? Screw 'em.

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Monday, December 16, 2002 4:28 AM
Wow. They wouldn't even take the private trains. It's not too hard to see what's going on here.

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Be polite and ignore the idiots. - rollergator
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Monday, December 16, 2002 4:57 AM
If Disney wants that so bad then they should just extend their monorail system and add more trains.

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Wood Rules!

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Monday, December 16, 2002 5:27 AM

That's one of the key points in the article. Disney claims they don't really care either way, which is why they didn't want it to have multiple stops. Aparently their bus transfer system can bring guests from the airport economically and easily, so they don't neccessarily want a train.

It sounds as though Disney has won this case. As unfair and non-community based it sounds, it'll return more profits with Disney having their own express line, as well as one that goes everywhere else.

Disney are only being fussy because they can. Would you settle for second-best if you've got an easy chance to get better? When you're in traffic, you won't stay in a slow lane if there's a fast one next to you. I cheerfully admit to getting burgers with one thing added or removed from most drive-thru's, because I prefer them with juicier, fresh vegetables, not the soggy heat-chute ones. What they're doing isn't neccessarily right, but I wouldn't really call it wrong, maybe exercising corporate power and being fussy, but not wrong - and most people interviewed in that article agreed with that.

I did find it rather biased in that they were all pro-'Disney getting their way', none of the interviewees were from other parks or attractions or entertainment venues in the Orlando area that could perhaps be hurt by Disney's plan. If it were just a single line/system, then it'd be very easy for holidayers to just hop from one attraction to another, whereas Disney would much rather make it very convenient to get directly to Disney, but particularly hard to get to other attractions (when I travel, I hate changing bus/train/plane).

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So what if the best coaster in Australia is a second hand Arrow?

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Monday, December 16, 2002 5:48 AM

But Beast Freak, that's just it, for what *I* gathered from the article, Disney does not WANT the train in the first place. They are *quite* content shuttling their visitors to the hotels via busses.

You have to look at the situation in its current context:

As it is, Disney sells thes "All-Inclusive" vacations where they pick people up at the airport, wisk them away to the WDW property, set 'em up in a hotel, and offer them transportation (via monorail) to all the WDW attractions. Note, these people do NOT have rental cars and the WDW property is quite far from the I-Drive attractions. Because of this, in order to get to I-Drive (SeaWorld, USF, IOA, etc) would cost these people cab fare.

Now, if there was high speed rail connecting I-Drive and Disney (via the airport), Disney is conjecturing that many of these previously "captive" guests will spend a day at an I-Drive attraction rather than spending money on WDW property. That is revenue that they have no desire to lose. THAT is good business sense. Disney can do *just* fine without the rail. So basically, they are in the cat bird seat. "We play *my* way, or I dont play!" And I think it is fine for them to say that.

I also think the local should say to Disney, "Fine! Go Home then!" There is no way in Hades that they should go along with Disney's plan ESPECIALLY since Disney isnt willing to chip in a dime to help with construction. This plan is bad for I-Drive visitors AS WELL AS DISNEY VISITORS. Read the "projections" of revenue credited to the "captive" guests. What is basically being said is that those "captive" guests, who were previously bussed on Dinesy's dime, will now be paying to ride the rail. DO you think Disney is going to be fronting that cost? Methinks not! So now, not only do the I-Drive attractions lose out on "borrowing" the Disney guests, not only does the Convention Center lose out on easy/traffic relieving/pollution reducing/cheap/speedy transportation but Disney gets a cost savings because they can now eliminate at least a portion of their bus service (perhaps retaining some as a "perk" for purchaing higher priced vacations).

Furthermore, if Disney *does not* cut it's bus service then the revenue from the "captive" guests is still not going to be realized. While as a Disney stockholder knowing that the plan would be good for me, this in NO WAY makes good public policy. If Disney wants exclusivity, then they should PAY for it.

lata, jeremy

--a devoted Disney fan

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Monday, December 16, 2002 6:00 AM
I agree with you 100%. Heck, the convention center alone, which will be at least twice the size it was when the expansion is done, puts butts in the hotels on I-Drive and I think is critical to that area's economy, especially with soft tourism. Whoever is in charge of planning the rail project has an obligation to make sure it stops there (if not the Universal complex as well).

To make the line go from the airport to Disney and on to Tampa would be a betrayal of the public's trust.

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com - Sillynonsense.com
DELETED! *** This post was edited by Jeff on 12/16/2002. ***

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Monday, December 16, 2002 6:28 AM

Exactly. Disney knows they can manipulate the state, so why not do it?

From what I gather from this article, the state of Florida has the money to build this, but not run it. Thats where the Mouse comes in. If they can finance most of the thing with money from Disney, I say do it. WDW has been waiting for this for a decade, so they are going to do whatever possible to make it go their way.

And for those of you who said "Walt wouldn't like this" you are sadly mistaken. Walt would have jumped at this chance to corner the market even more.

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"We don't sit on your dining room table, so please don't sit on our silver handrails"

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Monday, December 16, 2002 6:43 AM

A few months ago there was a topic that sparked the discussion of how much influence Disney has in Florida. A lot of you said they didn't have that much. NOT!

I mentioned this very example at that time and this is no news to us here in Florida. It has been talked about for a while. This is one one of dozens of things that Disney has used their power to get what they want. A lot of people in Florida have lost a lot of money because of some of the things they have shot down because of their power.

Disney is to Florida what the USA is to the rest of the world: the big power. I voted for this train(which by the way will take 10 YEARS to complete). I'd like to see it go through the other attractions as well. I'd be using it for a lot more than going to Orlando, though. Disney should spend more time building better rides. Nostalgia only goes so far. Their parks are becoming outdated and Universal has stolen their magic.

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Monday, December 16, 2002 7:04 AM

I wouldn't hold my breath on this one. The high speed rail project is an unfunded mandate. When it was on the ballot there was no mention of how to pay for it. I have seen estimates close to $100 billion to complete the state-wide project, including coming over the bay to my area. There has been a recent push to repeal the amendment and let the project die. Only time will tell.

I would love to ride a high speed rail to and from Orlando. But at what cost.

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"She said to me oh I love it when you're mean,
don't you know it's boring when it's quiet and serene.
I said to her no way baby, life ain't what it seems,
Well don't you know baby that life is a scream!" - Gordon Gano

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Monday, December 16, 2002 8:02 AM

How is Disney being arrogant? Why would they invest their own money is something that could hurt them in the end? I do agree that the public shouldn't be forking over the entire bill but keep in mind that Disney is their main employer and the more people you bring in, the more jobs there are (not to mention the jobs created to build and maintain the rail line). Disney would be very foolish to pump any money into this or back a plan that would include other stops. That would hurt the bottom line by allowing guests easier access to the competition. Can you blame them? Automakers must feel the same way about dealers that sell GM and Jeep at the same dealership. They can easily walk across the room and look at the competitor's product. The dealer doesn't care as long as they bought the truck but the automaker sure does care.

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Monday, December 16, 2002 8:48 AM

What? Disney wouldn't spend any money regardless. That's what sucks about the whole thing, they'll only allow it to go through Disney's compound if it's the first stop from the airport, bypassing the entire Universal/I-Drive/Sea World/Kissimmee area.

Disney can say this because without the 2.2 million tourists who would use the train to go to Disney, the state couldn't afford to operate it.

If any portion of the project is funded by the public, I have a problem with that demand, and the voters of Florida should as well. I say ditch the whole thing, because the state shouldn't be playing favorites to just one of its destinations.

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com - Sillynonsense.com
DELETED!

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Monday, December 16, 2002 8:50 AM

I've studied high speed rail projects around the country, and Florida's has been on the drawing board and cutting board many times over. Voters back it, then it gets cut a few years later. Most recently Jeb Bush cancalled a high speed rail link between Tampa-Orlando-Miami. So FIRST, we need to see if it's going to be built to begin with.

Second, the mouse might not have as much pull as you might think. That is, if interested opposing parties play their cards right and get their Congresspersons involved. Orlando is one of the BIG convention/event cities in the US--and they're still growing as other have pointed out. They have a lot going for them if they can band together.

Third, screw Disney. If they want a connection, the can fund a (much cheaper) LRT (light rail transit) line to whereever they want. They'll live either way.

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Is that a Q-bot in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?

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Monday, December 16, 2002 8:54 AM

I have to agree with you on this one Jeff (someone make sure the world isn't ending ;) ).. I thinks it's crap that if the tax payers are the ones flipping the bill that ANY private company has ANY say int it. Reguardless of how much of the tourism they are responsible for.

Now the question of "eminate domain" comes to mind..

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June 11th, 2001 - Gemini 100
VertiGo Rides - 82
Technical Services - 2002
Frightzone Screamster - 2002

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Monday, December 16, 2002 9:01 AM
In a perfect world that's how local and state governments would work... but you and I know that's not how anything works in government. ;)

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Is that a Q-bot in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?

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Monday, December 16, 2002 9:57 AM

Well, the fact that Florida voters voted for an unfunded high speed train in and of itself was an embarassment but now that it is happening, it shouldn't be a surprise that Disney is going to insist on what is best for them.

Frankly, if I am going on an "all-inclusive" to WDW I don't want to make several stops once I get to the airport.

Florida...umph! We also voted to lower class size without having any numbers for what it will cost in extra classrooms, teachers, etc. Yeah, we are pretty bright down here in the Sunshine State.

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Monday, December 16, 2002 10:41 AM
Disney is a company. They don't want something. SO SUE THEM. I like Disney, but I think this line will make them more competative to get more consumers on their property and staying there (like extending the monorail anyone?)

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Love,
The Mole

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Monday, December 16, 2002 11:42 AM
Pretty brazen move by Disney. Did you expect any different?

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www.PKIGuide.com

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Monday, December 16, 2002 1:11 PM

That is bull pure and simple. High Speed rail is a big deal for a state as crowded as Florida and it should accomadate all people.

What this woudl amount to would be a state funded monopoly of sorts.

If Disney wants there own line have them extend the monorail ;)

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1989, 9 years old bawling my eyes out because I didn't want to ride Magnum. I did anyway and look at me now. Why did ya make me do it Dave? ;)

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