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Unformatted text preview: Running head: DISNEY AMERICA’S THEME PARK Disney America’s Theme Park Discussion Board Forum Four Liberty University Disney America’s Theme Park Question: What are the key issues that Eisner must consider in this situation from a government relations perspective? Answer: With Washington D.C. being the third largest tourist market in the United States and Virginia being pro-growth, the CEO of Disney Michael Eisner proposed the opening of a new Disney theme park (Argenti, 2016, p. 241). With the support of both the outgoing and incoming governors of the state it seemed like the opening was evident. Unfortunately the $52.4 billion corporation would face many hurtles prior to opening which included resistance from the local 1 DISNEY AMERICA’S THEME PARK 2 community who pressured the government to protect the historical preserved lands (HernandezPerez, 2016, p. 3). One of the issues Disney faced with the project was requesting zoning approval as well as $130 million for local roads to serve the park (Argenti, 2016, p. 240). They proposed property in historical Peidmont County which is where the preserved homes of 5 U.S. Presidents, two dozen battlefields, and two major war battle fields lay. Even though Disney emphasized that there would be little impact on the environment or traffic routes local officials and residents were skeptica,l especially since Disney was initially keeping their land acquisitions a secret (Argenti, 2016, p. 243). Disney continuously face resistance from the Government because the government and elected officials continuously received push back from the local communities who voted them into office. The reason people were resistant to the project was because it projected 9 million visitors to Virginia and many feared the area would become overrun with cheap hotels, restaurant, and strip malls. Local officials also explained that Disney wasn’t truthful with the amount of jobs the new park would bring noting that the park would create only 6,300 versus the 19,000 stated, and most would be low-paying jobs providing no where near the tax base that Disney was promising (Argenti, 2016, p. 246). It seemed as though the local community would not allow for this development and would fight the plans utilizing the Prince Charitable Trust which would fund $400,000 to 14 antiDisney groups enabling them to conduct impact studies. These studies would not only effect Disney’s image but could bring to light additional skeletons in the closet. Another cause for concern was that Disney was asking the state of Virginia to fund $137 million in state highway DISNEY AMERICA’S THEME PARK 3 improvements and $21 million on other transitional expenses, if secured these funds would take away from other pots of money for the state (Argenti, 2016, p. 247). Even more obstacles Eisner had to consider when dealing with the government and local official was the land for which Disneu was trying to build. Proponents argued that historic districts not only preserve architectural history but also generate economic externalities by increasing tourism and nurturing the city's art and culture. Preserved lands create a common identity for neighborhood residents and the creation of unified historic neighborhoods could encourage the growth of community organizations and heighten social cohesion. Additionally, preservation districts almost always reduce construction making residentially value increase (Been, V., Gedal, M., Glaeser, E., & McCabe, B. J. p. 2016). With the proposed build up their would be an increase in property construction which would afford residential areas cheaper living accommodations. This would be bad for current residents but good for those inbound who wished to work for Disney or the supporting hotels and restaurants around the park. In conclusion it appears the new theme park idea would cheapen Virginia’s historical value. Virginia spent $2 million fighting against Disney which is money that could have been used for local communities. Virginia’s landmarks are national treasures and the government has a responsibility to protect them. If Disney were to continue with their plans they would no doubt face constant lawsuits surrounding property issues, jobs, and costly attraction rebuilds. It was seen in Euro Disneyland that the whole project was driven by the success that the three previous projects had experienced in Florida, California, and Japan. Executives hoped to attract 11 million guests a year, more than twice the number of tourists that visit the Eiffel Tower however, they lacked long term strategic vision and failed in multiple areas surrounding culture and human resource management (Karadjova-Stoev, G., & Mujtaba, B. G. 2016). DISNEY AMERICA’S THEME PARK 4 If Disney was brought to Virginia it would attract almost nine mission visitors, most there for the Disney attractions and no longer the historic landmarks. After assessing all of the issues surrounding issues with the public and government officials, Disney should re-evaluate their plan and heed William Becker’s slogan of “Disney, Take a Second Look” (Argenti, 2016, p. 246). Eisner needs to have integrity. It appears that the company is just trying to make more profits on the premise of paying homage to Virginia’s rich American history. However, 1 Chronicles 29:17 states, I know, my God, that you examine our hearts and rejoice when you find integrity there. So you will walk in the way of the good and keep to the paths of the righteous. For the upright will inhabit the land, and those with integrity will remain in it (Proverbs 2:20-21). References Argenti, P.A. (2016). Corporate Communication. (7th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw Hill Education Been, V., Gedal, M., Glaeser, E., & McCabe, B. J. (2016). Preserving history or restricting development? the heterogeneous effects of historic districts on local housing markets in new york city. Journal of Urban Economics, 92, 16-30. doi:10.1016/j.jue.2015.12.002 Hernandez-Perez, M. (2016). Animation, branding and authorship in the construction of the 'antidisney ethos: Hayao miyazakis works and persona through disney film criticism.Animation, 11(3), 297-313. doi:10.1177/1746847716660684 DISNEY AMERICA’S THEME PARK Karadjova-Stoev, G., & Mujtaba, B. G. (2016). Strategic human resource management and global expansion lessons from the euro disney challenges in france. International Business & Economics Research Journal (IBER), 15(3), 79. doi:10.19030/iber.v15i3.9672 5 ...
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