Disney's Lost Patriotic Theme Park: Never Built Disney's America Part 1

Never Built Disney's America

Disney's America Never Built Theme Park Concept Art

It is rare that a major Disney Parks project gets canceled after getting publicly announced. It is unheard of that one blows up in the way that Disney's America did.

Welcome to Never Built Disney's America, an all-new weekly series here at TPE going through the history, attractions, and impact of Disney's America, the never-built theme park that Disney planned for the greater Washington D.C. area. For this first part, we are looking into the general plan for the park. In future weeks we will go through everything from its downfall, specific lands and attractions, and its impact on other parks

Disney's America was meant to tap into one of the largest untapped theme park tourist markets in the US. Located between the nation's capital, full of museums and monuments, as well as Colonial Williamsburg and several historic battlefields it was in an ideal location for a new Disney theme park, and the Americana theme would hopefully interest the typical traveler to the area to add on a day at the park to their larger trip to surrounding destinations.

The basic idea of the park was that it was going to take you through several distinct moments in American history from the time of Native Americans before European settlers to the progress of the mid 20th century.

The park would be located surrounding a central lagoon with a train connecting the park to other parts of the larger resort.

The lands, in chronological order of when they would have taken place, would have been Native America, President's Square, Crossroads USA, Civil War Fort, Enterprise, We The People, Victory Field, State Fair, and Family Farm.

Disney's America Logo

It would have been different than any Disney Park built before or since and have been the first Disney resort built without a castle-style park. In fact, there would be an almost complete lack of Disney characters in the entire park, and historical accuracy would be placed at a premium. They were even taking the presence of nearby historic sites into account in planning the park to ensure they were not disturbed by the park's operations.

Disney put accuracy ahead of the Disney brand in planning this park, knowingly opening themselves up to criticism.

Disney's America Concept Art Never Built

It was planned to be a first for Disney Parks, the first Disney Park to ever operate seasonally, with it intending to be closed in January and February.

The park was intended to be built in stages as a result of the recent failure of Euro Disneyland. It would have limited Disney's upfront risk by not building the entire park at the same time. It is uncertain what parts of the park would have been built first.

This park was announced with the support of both current and future politicians, and respect to surrounding sites. But Disney was left completely unprepared for the overwhelmingly negative reaction from the residents.

Thanks for joining us in the first part of Never Built Disney's America and be sure to join us next week as we explore the downfall of Disney's America. Check out even more Never Built Disney Attractions here.