Everyone knows that incredible storytelling is the heart and soul of every Disney attraction. But the spark behind the magic of everything Disney is cutting edge technology. From the introduction of audio-animatronics to pioneering the latest ride vehicles and experiences, the Walt Disney company has built a long-lasting tradition of tech innovation. But often times as guests we only see but the finished product, the final effect of technology as it reaches our senses as light, sound, or movement. Yet there is so much more. In fact Disney has implemented incredible technologies that allow them to push the boundaries of theme park attractions not only in their final execution but also in their construction. So often this part of the magic has been hidden from the view of fans, that is until now.
As New Fantasyland construction paces towards a 2012 first phase opening, Imagineers and the Disney Parks Blog share with us their latest design and constructions tools that allow them incredible flexibility both while working inside their offices and when at the Fantasyland construction site itself. Through the use of Building Information Modeling (BIM) and other visualization software, Disney Imagineers and contractors are able to map out the entire construction project before the first shovel of dirt is tossed. Not only does this allow for everyone who works on the project to fine tune and unify around the vision of the attraction but the software is designed to flag any perceived imperfections in the design or construction plans of the build. By removing errors away from the actual construction site where the fixes are always more tedious, BIM allows Disney to remove the normal delays and higher than anticipated construction costs that for so long had been an accepted by-product of the way construction was done in the past. But of course it doesn’t end there.
Thanks to the wonders of mobile technology and the creation of the iPad, Disney Imagineers are able to take the information away from their office desktop computers and into the field. From planning to execution information flows faster, is more concrete and allows for changes to be made on-the-fly through interactions using WebEx conferencing and collaboration tools. It is all incredibly fascinating and you can see it for yourself in the video below that throws in a few exciting looks at New Fantasyland for good measure.