In 1975, EPCOT Center was a far different creature than the park that debuted in 1982. Known then by the unwieldy moniker “EPCOT Future World Theme Center”, the park had yet to be mated with its counterpart, the World Showcase, which was still intended for a site across the Seven Seas Lagoon from the Magic Kingdom.
At the center of the parks layout, shown below, was the “World City” model. This would be part of the park’s Communications Corridor, or “Communicore”, which would act as the park’s Main Street area and extend from the park’s entrance through to where the Fountain of Nations is today.
The World City model was described in the 1975 Walt Disney Productions annual report:
– The World City model, which would combine advanced entertainment techniques – miniaturization, video projection, animation and computer-driven simulations and displays – to trace the evolution of the major cities of the world, and to portray a model community of the future in the process of growth and adaptation.
The artist in the image at the top of the article is John DeCuir Jr., long-time Disney Imagineer. His father, John DeCuir Sr., also worked for Disney while also having a long career as a prominent Hollywood production designer and art director. His credits included Hello, Dolly! and Cleopatra, among many others, and relevant to our discussion he worked on the original Space pavilion intended for EPCOT Center.
The younger DeCuir has a long list of Disney design credits, including the Hall of Presidents, the Contemporary and Polynesian resorts, World Showcase, Spaceship Earth and later MuppetVision 3-D and Alien Encounter. He has continued to work on film and television projects to this day.