We often hear about the Utilidors at MK - why Walt wanted them, where they go, bootleg videos of them, etc. However, we never hear about Utilidors at the other WDW parks. Do they not have them, and if not, why? Do they have more extensive backstage areas that allow for the unseen movement of Cast and services? Or are the Utilidors not as useful as we are led to believe? Thoughts or details, anyone?
At Epcot, I know they have a more extensive backstage area. No real utilidors there, but a roadway around the entire park. I believe the same is true of Animal Kingdom, I’ve heard that it’s a big enough area that the CMs sometimes ride bikes from one area to another. No idea about DHS, though.
This is just speculation but…
One aspect of the MK is that each area/land has a specific “theme”, so CMs in costume & in character can’t be in another land they don’t belong in. I believe that was one of the impetuses for the utilidors concept. The other parks (HS notwithstanding) probably don’t have that “problem” to the same degree. And every country in WS is along the “perimeter” so it can have backstage areas behind it.
It is still genuinely fascinating & remarkable that all of MK is actually on the 2nd floor of a building.
Great question. I’m hoping someone else can shed some better light on it.
I’ve always thought that was odd, since Disney still promotes how the useful the “first floor” of the Magic Kingdom is and yet they’ve never duplicated in another park. I believe Epcot has a small tunnel system, but pretty much everything other than Communicore/Innoventions backs up to backstage area, so there’s not much need to move things underground there. My guess as to why utilidors didn’t find their way into other Magic Kingdoms is because other parks weren’t build on swampland, with a need to elevate the terrain (though I thought Tokyo Disneyland was built over some sort of landfill).
Wow, great question. According to www.hiddenmickeys.org, there is a small tunnel in EPCOT.
As an aside, Epcot and the Disney Studios do not have tunnels like the Magic Kingdom does. At Epcot, there is a small tunnel under connecting the two parts of Innoventions and The Land. It’s mostly for storage, kitchens, and break rooms. And another tunnel that leads from Universe of Energy, under Spaceship Earth, and ends at The Living Seas.
Take that for what it’s worth.
These tunnels at EP make sense. As @theredhead mentioned, the backstage area pretty much surrounds EP except for the Main Entrance so there is easy out-of-site access to most things, but the tunnel from Ellen to Seas allows for a shortcut when going from the main CM areas to Seas rather than having to go all the way around.
I recall someone (maybe Jim Hill, but if not him, someone like that) once indicating that because the theme for DHS was a working movie studio, there was not the same need for them that you have at MK because there would be nothing out of place about people in various costumes just strolling around. If anything, it would enhance the idea that this was a place where movies were made.
@rosemergy, that is accurate about the Studios, but what seems strange to me is why no Utilidors were built in Tokyo, Paris, etc. in the Magic Kingdom style parks.