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Cinderella Castle looks bigger than it really is

robw1997

Member
Original Poster
Why is it that Cinderella Castle is only 189 ft. tall, but it looks to be about 500 ft. tall. Also, why is it that the castle looks so much bigger from Main Street USA, than when you are looking at it from the hub?
 

mwbrown

New Member
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Its all about Forced Perspective. As the castle gets taller, the windows get smaller width-wise and taller, which makes the eye perceive it as taller. The buildings on Main St. USA do it too, although to a much more limited extent.

It is part of why the trees that used to fill the hub got cut down (although mostly for the fireworks I think). As the trees grew taller and taller, it blew the forced perspective of the castle because it showed the castle as not that tall compared to the trees, and it blocked the ground level which sets up the forced perspective effect....
 

DVCOwner

A Long Time DVC Member
I have read that one of the reasons the castle is only 189 feet tall is that at the time it was built any building 190 feet or taller had to have a aircraft becon on it.
 

WDWScottieBoy

Well-Known Member
When walking towards the castle from MSUSA, you're actually walking uphill a slight bit to give it a higher look. Also, as previously mentioned, the "bricks" get smaller but make it appear that it's because of height. All of MSUSA is done this same way with forced perspective. And DVCOwner, you are right, most things at Disney are a certain height due to FAA requirements to avoid having lights put on them.
 

Scuttle

Well-Known Member
I have read that one of the reasons the castle is only 189 feet tall is that at the time it was built any building 190 feet or taller had to have a aircraft becon on it.
It can't be over 199 feet tall same with tower of terror
 

Theosus

Member
If you look at the second floors on main street, they are the same way... They aren't really a full second story. Everest is under two hundred feet too, it would look funny to have mount everest with a red blinky light on top.
 

Nick Wilde

Well-Known Member
Another way they use Forced Perspective, is at the beginning of MS, the buildings are tall and get shorter as yo go down. They also gain more stories the shorter they get.
 

tahqa

Well-Known Member
I have read that one of the reasons the castle is only 189 feet tall is that at the time it was built any building 190 feet or taller had to have a aircraft becon on it.
200 feet is where you have to start using the aircraft beacons. The Mickey Hand that loomed over Spaceship Earth had an aircraft beacon on it.
 

JoeCamel

Well-Known Member
I hear the height restriction quoted often but where do you measure from? Would it be from the surface of the seven seas lagoon or the stage in front of the castle? Sea level or the top of everest?

The FAA says "Above Ground Level (AGL)" so does the height include the tunnels? Don't know and really don't care just curious.
 
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Crazydisneyfanluke

Well-Known Member
I hear the height restriction quoted often but where do you measure from? Would it be from the surface of the seven seas lagoon or the stage in front of the castle? Sea level or the top of everest?

The FAA says "Above Ground Level (AGL)" so does the height include the tunnels? Don't know and really don't care just curious.
If the castle is 189 feet, and the limit is 199 ft, then i believe its from ground level. the tunnels are probably 9 feet tall with a foot of concrete.
 

lazyboy97o

Well-Known Member
Another way they use Forced Perspective, is at the beginning of MS, the buildings are tall and get shorter as yo go down. They also gain more stories the shorter they get.
This is not true. Neither is the story about the street itself being wider at one end.
 
I hear the height restriction quoted often but where do you measure from? Would it be from the surface of the seven seas lagoon or the stage in front of the castle? Sea level or the top of everest?

The FAA says "Above Ground Level (AGL)" so does the height include the tunnels? Don't know and really don't care just curious.
Ground level is relative, so the tunnels wouldn't matter. If I'm not mistaken, the 189' actually measures from the base of the castle, at the bottom of the moat, to the highest turret. The castle itself is 183'. Now, the question is how far above "ground level" the bottom of the moat is. And what constitutes "ground level" if the grade has been permanently modified.

Sea level would be more interesting, since it is a constant. My house is 400' above sea level, and I certainly wouldn't want to have a beacon 200' underground. :)

If the castle is 189 feet, and the limit is 199 ft, then i believe its from ground level. the tunnels are probably 9 feet tall with a foot of concrete.
When the castle was being constructed, 190' was the regulation from the FAA. The regulation has since changed to 200', allowing for the extra height on Expedition Everest.
 

DinoInstitute

Well-Known Member
Am i the only one that doesn't really fall for force perspective, I mean at least not as much.

For me it seems obvious that the windows and such are smaller than they should be. This is especially with Hogwarts castle and to a lesser extent Cinderella
 

lazyboy97o

Well-Known Member
What's your source? Mine's from The Hidden Magic Of Walt Disney World. It's a book, not an internet site.
Observation. You can just look at the buildings and street to see that there is no significant difference in height and that most of the floors align. You can do it at home with Bing Maps' Birds Eye View. There are also published elevation drawings of Main Street, USA out there that also show this.
 

RMichael21

Well-Known Member
Am i the only one that doesn't really fall for force perspective, I mean at least not as much.

For me it seems obvious that the windows and such are smaller than they should be. This is especially with Hogwarts castle and to a lesser extent Cinderella
No, I think everyone doesn't fall for the beast's castle in NFL...
 
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