Politics Anaheim Businesses Worry About Going Under if Governor Keeps Disneyland Closed - Spectrum News

This thread contains political discussion related to the original thread topic

TP2000

Well-Known Member
I'm really surprised to learn that the McDonald's on Harbor remains closed now and even more shocked that it closed at all. There still has to be plenty of traffic on Harbor to support this business. Many fast-food restaurants have done surprisingly well with drive-thru sales throughout the pandemic. While many Americans have opted out of dining in, they are still dining out.

The Anaheim Resort District is really kind of cut off from the rest of the world. It's amazing how the traffic dies off once you enter the Resort area, but go a mile east past the freeway and the traffic picks back up again. Of course there are several other McDonald's and Starbucks and businesses that are aimed at the residents in those areas around the Resort District.

But the Resort District itself is an island of abandoned businesses and a closed community. I could walk right out into the middle of Harbor Blvd. in late afternoon and take this photo because there was simply no cars and no people; but once I drove home towards Villa Park the traffic picked up and life returned to normal a mile east of here...

IMG_0427 (2).JPG


I took this photo the same day about 30 minutes after I took that photo above. This is my local supermarket, which I took a picture of as I stopped in for some groceries because it was a notable change after feeling like The Last Man On Earth when I walked around Disneyland earlier. People, shoppers, cars, traffic, normal suburban life just a few miles east and a few minutes after I visited an abandoned Anaheim Resort District.

IMG_0468 (2).JPG
 
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TP2000

Well-Known Member
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Back to the Anaheim Resort District businesses.

I'm going to call a friend up in OC who is involved in that real estate market and get his thoughts on today's news.

I don't expect to hear good things.
 

TP2000

Well-Known Member
I just got off the phone with an old friend who is very knowledgeable about the real estate biz in the Anaheim Resort District.

This news from Sacramento today was expected, Anaheim politicians had been bracing key players for it, and yet it still hit the big players like a ton of bricks once it was formally and officially announced. Everyone has been texting and phoning everyone for the past six hours.

The response from many of the big corporate players in Anaheim is now "Exit Strategy". They need to figure out how to get out of that market with as little damage as possible. We've all been focused on Disneyland, and that's a huge part of it, but the realization that the Anaheim Convention Center won't be allowed by Sacramento to reopen until much later in 2021 is also hitting hard.

The smaller family businesses, like the Tropicana or Park Vue motels, or the various restaurants and shops in the Resort District, are now completely destroyed. What few family businesses that still had some liquidity after six months of closure can't make it another three months. Let alone another six months or more until Disneyland reopens in a dramatically shrunken format in the summer of 2021.

The small family businesses are toast. The bigger corporate properties are now considering exit strategies. Some of the big corporate properties are going to try a staycation strategy aimed at locals, but they aren't sure it can work since they are nowhere near the ocean or any sort of attractive natural or urban environment like their coastal OC and trendy west LA properties.

Anaheim Resort District without Disneyland is a pointless wasteland. It's just Stanton, but closer to the freeway.

Paraphrasing and cleaning up a bit from what my friend said... "Honestly, why would anyone pay to go to the new Westin or JW Marriott to spend your weekend wandering around an abandoned resort district overrun with drugged out homeless guys crapping in the gutters?"

The Anaheim Resort District is doomed for 2021. Unless Governor Newsom suddenly reverses this decision after November 3rd. Based on Science and Data, of course. ;)
 
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George Lucas on a Bench

Well-Known Member
The Westin should sell that place to a real estate agency who can convert it into apartments. There's absolutely no reason to be in business in the Anaheim Resort area. Shut it down, write it off.

As for the Alpine Inn? I'll offer them a couple hundred bucks for the lamp in the upstairs window.
 

TP2000

Well-Known Member
As for the Alpine Inn? I'll offer them a couple hundred bucks for the lamp in the upstairs window.

When the Alpine Inn has their foreclosure property auction, I'm going to fight you for it.

Luckily, there are two of those lamps. One in each window.

From great adversity can come great beauty. Or at least a tacky lamp with a heckuva backstory.
 

Vegas Disney Fan

Well-Known Member
Does anyone here reckon that Disney will try to scoop up these broken businesses along Harbor and revise their Eastern Esplanade plans with LESS rather than MORE sensitivity to the locals? If Disney has any money to spend, of course.

After the last few years I don‘t see Disney increasing their footprint in CA, they’d be better off building a third resort in a more business friendly state to reduce their exposure in CA.

Between the mess with the eastern gateway, then the mess with the DTD hotel, and now the mess with reopening they‘ve lost billions due to political fights in CA.

They’d be better off building a third park in a more central location that could attract 10 million new guests rather than adding on to an already packed DL trying to shoehorn in a few more guests.
 

el_super

Well-Known Member
After the last few years I don‘t see Disney increasing their footprint in CA, they’d be better off building a third resort in a more business friendly state to reduce their exposure in CA.

It was very doubtful that they would have built a third park in CA anyway, as the demand from the second never really reached expectations. Disney won't build another resort in the US as they can easily just focus their attention on WDW to expand capacity if needed. The real growth is outside the US in new emerging markets. I would think Disney would build another park in China or India instead of the US.
 

britain

Well-Known Member
After the last few years I don‘t see Disney increasing their footprint in CA, they’d be better off building a third resort in a more business friendly state to reduce their exposure in CA.

Between the mess with the eastern gateway, then the mess with the DTD hotel, and now the mess with reopening they‘ve lost billions due to political fights in CA.

They’d be better off building a third park in a more central location that could attract 10 million new guests rather than adding on to an already packed DL trying to shoehorn in a few more guests.
It IS a tempting armchair imagineer project: “What would a 3rd US resort look like?” You wouldn’t want to cannibalise the offerings from the other two resorts, but you’d probably still do a ‘castle park’ to maintain brand consistency.

Overall, I’d guess it would be Chapek’s opportunity to clone a lot of the recent reinventing done for Shanghai Disneyland, but with a little less Pirates & Tron, and more Star Wars & Marvel. I’d say top priority would be to lean heavily into Marvel (probably as a complete replacement for Tomorrowland) since a central location like Texas would get Disney as close as they legally could to the eastern US with those properties.

Ok, end dream. Back to the nightmare.
 

FerretAfros

Well-Known Member
The Anaheim Resort District is really kind of cut off from the rest of the world. It's amazing how the traffic dies off once you enter the Resort area, but go a mile east past the freeway and the traffic picks back up again. Of course there are several other McDonald's and Starbucks and businesses that are aimed at the residents in those areas around the Resort District.

But the Resort District itself is an island of abandoned businesses and a closed community. I could walk right out into the middle of Harbor Blvd. in late afternoon and take this photo because there was simply no cars and no people; but once I drove home towards Villa Park the traffic picked up and life returned to normal a mile east of here...

View attachment 507355

I took this photo the same day about 30 minutes after I took that photo above. This is my local supermarket, which I took a picture of as I stopped in for some groceries because it was a notable change after feeling like The Last Man On Earth when I walked around Disneyland earlier. People, shoppers, cars, traffic, normal suburban life just a few miles east and a few minutes after I visited an abandoned Anaheim Resort District.

View attachment 507359
And yet there was such a so much pushback when it was suggested that some sort of traffic calming could be installed along Harbor Blvd, because allegedly it's such a major thoroughfare for local traffic crisscrossing the Resort District. ;)

In reality, locals (aka, people proximate to these theme parks) have long since learned to avoid that stretch of road due to the congestion and slow travel times. Sure, there may be a couple very specific examples where that's the preferred route for someone with neither an origin nor destination in the immediate vicinity, but by and large the traffic along Harbor Blvd is there to serve the Resort District itself. Even when the tourists (aka, people from around the world who descend) and the traffic they create are gone, locals continue to avoid that particular stretch of roadway.

More than ever, it's clear that Harbor Blvd primarily serves the Resort District, and the businesses and customers in it. It's a transfer point where people continue their journey on foot, not a super-highway for through-traffic to distant destinations. As such, the road should be reconfigured with a focus on pedestrians first, deliveries (whether people or goods) second, and passersby a distant third.

The city dodged a bullet when the original Eastern Gateway design was cancelled over disagreements on aesthetics of the bridge. The layout was fundamentally incompatible with the surrounding land uses, treating Harbor Blvd more as a treacherous obstacle that must be crossed, rather than a permeable stream providing life to the neighborhood. Instead of creating a walled-off fortress, a holistic solution needs to continue the area's (unfortunately slow) steady progress toward approachability, walkability, and accessibility for its primary users (in this case, tourists at the start/end of their trip).

If ever there was a good time to undertake a major road construction project with minimal impacts, this would be it, while the Resort District is nearly abandoned. Unfortunately, major infrastructure improvements (whether public or private) seem highly unlikely for the foreseeable future, given the economic impacts of everything going on.
 

LastoneOn

Well-Known Member
Would this give new momentum to the state split efforts? Not that it would be timely to prevent econ disaster, but under the guise of a once and for all, never again, sort of thrust? I have little technical knowledge of that proposed arrangement
 

cmwade77

Well-Known Member
Would this give new momentum to the state split efforts? Not that it would be timely to prevent econ disaster, but under the guise of a once and for all, never again, sort of thrust? I have little technical knowledge of that proposed arrangement
The problem becomes, how do you fairly split the state? You will end up with many socioeconomic issues if it isn't planned properly. It is the same issue as trying to split up LAUSD, both really need to be split into smaller entities, but there is no good way of doing it.
 

Stevek

Well-Known Member
Though it would be smart to buy and expand, it would look bad spending that money after cms are getting the boot left and right.
Unless your POV is that IF we have a larger footprint we have the opportunity to employee even more folks once we get to normalcy
 

jrayfarm

New Member
The Anaheim Resort District is really kind of cut off from the rest of the world. It's amazing how the traffic dies off once you enter the Resort area, but go a mile east past the freeway and the traffic picks back up again. Of course there are several other McDonald's and Starbucks and businesses that are aimed at the residents in those areas around the Resort District.

But the Resort District itself is an island of abandoned businesses and a closed community. I could walk right out into the middle of Harbor Blvd. in late afternoon and take this photo because there was simply no cars and no people; but once I drove home towards Villa Park the traffic picked up and life returned to normal a mile east of here...

View attachment 507355

I took this photo the same day about 30 minutes after I took that photo above. This is my local supermarket, which I took a picture of as I stopped in for some groceries because it was a notable change after feeling like The Last Man On Earth when I walked around Disneyland earlier. People, shoppers, cars, traffic, normal suburban life just a few miles east and a few minutes after I visited an abandoned Anaheim Resort District.

View attachment 507359
We are grocery store neighbors! Although sometimes I enjoy the Stater Bros on Chapman avenue (but NOT the one on Collins. Bleck!)
 

TP2000

Well-Known Member
And yet there was such a so much pushback when it was suggested that some sort of traffic calming could be installed along Harbor Blvd, because allegedly it's such a major thoroughfare for local traffic crisscrossing the Resort District. ;)

In reality, locals (aka, people proximate to these theme parks) have long since learned to avoid that stretch of road due to the congestion and slow travel times. Sure, there may be a couple very specific examples where that's the preferred route for someone with neither an origin nor destination in the immediate vicinity, but by and large the traffic along Harbor Blvd is there to serve the Resort District itself. Even when the tourists (aka, people from around the world who descend) and the traffic they create are gone, locals continue to avoid that particular stretch of roadway.

More than ever, it's clear that Harbor Blvd primarily serves the Resort District, and the businesses and customers in it. It's a transfer point where people continue their journey on foot, not a super-highway for through-traffic to distant destinations. As such, the road should be reconfigured with a focus on pedestrians first, deliveries (whether people or goods) second, and passersby a distant third.

The city dodged a bullet when the original Eastern Gateway design was cancelled over disagreements on aesthetics of the bridge. The layout was fundamentally incompatible with the surrounding land uses, treating Harbor Blvd more as a treacherous obstacle that must be crossed, rather than a permeable stream providing life to the neighborhood. Instead of creating a walled-off fortress, a holistic solution needs to continue the area's (unfortunately slow) steady progress toward approachability, walkability, and accessibility for its primary users (in this case, tourists at the start/end of their trip).

If ever there was a good time to undertake a major road construction project with minimal impacts, this would be it, while the Resort District is nearly abandoned. Unfortunately, major infrastructure improvements (whether public or private) seem highly unlikely for the foreseeable future, given the economic impacts of everything going on.

Brilliant summation! Your contributions here are always an informative read.

Harbor Blvd. and Katella Ave. for the past six months proves how needless that area is for most locals people proximate to that area.

The silver lining to the current disaster Disneyland and the Resort District are dealing with is that it gives them a second chance at some mistakes they were about to make in the past. Let's hope they don't waste that opportunity.

Although I worry that the long-term financial situation will squash any momentum to really rethink investment in and around the Resort District, both on private property and the public right of ways. It's easy to think big and go bold when there's lots of money in your bank account! Anaheim and Disneyland won't have lots of money to play with for quite awhile now.
 

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