Disney + Greensboro = Economic and Social Vitality

The Disney Geeks continues to cheer the rumors about Disney building an entertainment complex in Greensboro, NC.

Please keep your arms, legs and brain inside the blog at all times!

The following is excerpted from the 2005 Disney Annual Report:

We believe that Disney’s long-term prosperity fundamentally rests on our ability to create exceptional content that audiences around the world embrace, to deliver that content, to the greatest extent possible, to consumers when, how and where they want it, and to do so in a way that delivers economic value to our shareholders over the long term. Allocating capital profitably and managing our day to day operations in a way that maximizes Disney’s opportunity for both creative and financial success are the most important ways that we serve the owners of our Company.

To measure how we are doing as we seek to sustain robust financial performance over time, we track three major financial metrics: 1) earnings, 2) free cash flow and 3) return on investment. We believe that we must deliver strong results on all three of these metrics over time. None of them, taken alone, is a sufficient indicator of value creation, but we believe delivering attractive results for all three of these metrics over the long run will drive long-term economic prosperity for our Company.

As we target these long-term financial goals, we will continually fortify our established businesses and brands because they remain a vital part of our future. At the same time, we will embrace and seek to capitalize on the changes that are transforming the media business. Across the Company, we are pioneering new distribution opportunities and investing in a wide variety of initiatives to position Disney as a preeminent player in the rapidly evolving media marketplace.

Now we turn to Action Greensboro’s number one goal in their 2006 Annual Report:

I. Build Community Spirit, Image and Civic Engagement.

Center City Revitalization

A City’s downtown is the #1 indicator of its economic vibrancy. Action Greensboro’s center city initiatives are designed to serve as a catalyst for additional private and public investment. In 2006, the revitalization of Greensboro’s downtown continued to be a priority. Completion of the new $12 million Center City Park was the major center city event of 2006. With a spectacular, programmable fountain, numerous alcoves for quiet enjoyment, two large areas for special events, intriguing original works of art by local artists, beautifully implemented design details, trees, plants and flowers, Center City Park opened on December 1.
The City of Greensboro agreed to provide $350,000 in annual support for the Park and contracts were signed with Downtown Greensboro, Inc. to maintain the Park and with Grassroots Productions Limited, Inc. to manage special events. Johnny Burris was hired
as Park Manager.

Further into the document, we see the heading Attracting and Retaining Young Professionals.
We applaud Action Greensboro as one of the beacons in the downtown revitalization.

Looking at the goals for Action Greensboro and the intent of Disney’s Annual Report, we come to the conclusion that Disney will be good for Greensboro. Disney is rumored to be looking at several locations in the eastern part of the United States. Locations to be home to urban entertainment complexes.

We’re not talking about plopping a Magic Kingdom or Epcot in the middle of downtown Greensboro. We’re talking about a complex with a themed hotel, ESPN Zone, Broadway style theater and a themed restaurant or two.

Still scared of a Disney themed hotel in downtown Greensboro? Check out this article from the Orlando Sentinel:
Disney to partner with Four Seasons on luxury resort

With a partner like the Four Seasons providing a luxury hotel at Walt Disney World, imagine what a partnership like that could do for a hotel in Greensboro. Coupling Four Season’s and Disney’s resort expertise is like the Yankees and the Red Sox fielding a team together. Ritz Carlton service with FedEx efficiency.

Also, the synergy between Disney’s Wide World of Sports, ESPN Zone, and the ACC Hall of Champions would be incredible.
Imagine….a few hours at the ACC Hall of Champions revelling in Jordan, Worthy, and Jimmy V followed by a big steak in front of the mega screens at ESPN Zone, a few video games after dinner to settle the feast, and out to a local bar for a few drinks (and dancing if the mood strikes and the gut is willing).

There is always concern about corporate responsibility and the environment. Disney has released their Envirport for 2006.

Just for fun, here are some facts:

  • Disney business units donated and recycled more than 63,000 tons of materials in 2005, resulting in an estimated 40 percent waste diversion from landfills and nearly $1.7 million in avoided disposal costs.
  • Disneyland Resort Paris increased cardboard recycling totals by 32 percent last year as a result of efforts to enhance communications and to add collection points throughout the Resort.
  • An adult bull elephant produces approximately 350 pounds of “poop” during each 24-hour period. In 2005, Disney’s Animal Kingdom composted more than 2,600 tons of animal waste.
  • The Walt Disney Company as a whole has recycled more than 850,000 tons of materials since 1991.

The rumored investment towers over Greensboro at $150 million (that’s SEVEN zeroes) and would serve as the permanent “We’re Back!” Greensboro has been hoping for since its revitalization phase began. Coupled with the blossoming club scene and the spectacular new Grasshoppers stadium, a complex of this magnitude would ensure downtown’s longevity and add revenue to the small and mid size businesses that call downtown home.

Synergy, eh?

This will bring jobs to Greensboro.

This will bring a more active nightlife to Greensboro.

This will bring longevity to downtown.

Don’t forget to stop by our site and leave some Disney Geek love!


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