20 Rare Photos Taken During Walt Disney World Construction That Will Simply Astound You

Sometimes it’s hard to visit Disney World and recognize the fact that it wasn’t just put there for all to enjoy. That there was a building and construction process that took many, many years. Walt Disney World in Orlando is so well-crafted, so well put-together that we often forget that it took time and effort and maybe a little bit of magic to construct. Which is why these 20 rare photos taken during the Walt Disney World construction process will simply astound you. Take a look.

The most magical place in the world — Walt Disney World — wasn’t always such a beautifully-crafted place. What began development in the 1960s by Walt Disney himself, this complex was also known as “The Florida Project.” Disney searched high and low in the late 1950s for land to house the second resort. After marketing surveys showed that many of Disneyland’s visitors came from east of the Mississippi, Disney started looking in the South. After flying over a potential site in Orlando, and seeing firsthand the development of roads and planned construction in the area, Disney decided finally settled on a location.

Initially, “The Florida Project” was intended to supplement Disneyland in California, but provide a more diverse set of attractions. In the first established set of plans, the Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, or EPCOT, was intended to serve as a test for innovations for new city living. Even after much lobbying on Disney’s part, the Government of Florida approved a special government district, essentially giving Disney the authority to create an incorporated city. Sadly, Walt Disney passed away on December 15, 1966, during construction of his Florida dream.

Without Disney at the helm of construction, the company ended up nixing the EPCOT city plans and created a resort similar to Disneyland. In 1967, Roy O. Disney, Walt’s brother came out of retirement to see to it that Walt Disney World was finished. The Magic Kingdom was the first park to open within the entire complex in 1971. Epcot opened next in 1982, with Disney’s Hollywood Studios in 1989 and Disney’s Animal Kingdom in 1998. Today, Walt Disney World has an annual average attendance of over 52 million visitors and has become a flagship vacation destination for families all over the world.

How about those photos?! Thanks to YouTuber Tim Tracy, we’re able to see the construction photos of Walt Disney World in full effect:

So, what do you think? Pretty magical, right?

If you have any more tidbits to share about the Walt Disney World construction process, make sure to leave some in the comments! Otherwise, if you’re ready for another Florida history lesson, take a look at Underneath This Florida City Lies A Creepy Yet Amazing Abandoned Tunnel System.