Sound Barrier

It’s all in the details and Disney proofs this time and time again. Just look at the news about the new Toy Story Playland we brought you here during the last couple of days. How important it is to Disney and the Imagineers to create a perfect experience can be seen in the many details they look after when designing the attractions and the general themeing of an area. Some of these details might not be that visual and other are created to take care of an annoying side effect. A good example for the latter case can be found in the waiting areas of the Slinky Dog ZigZag Spin as well as the Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop… 

Both rides’ queue areas, in normal circumstances, might have a rather high volume level for guests in the line due to the structure they are housed in. To avoid this effect Imagineering made sure not to use regular steel / ceiling plates – as would be used in normal circumstances.

To help reduce the reflection of sound from the ceiling in case of the Slinky Dog ZigZag Spin the Imagineers instead used plane ceiling moduls with many small holes (one could say “perforated” ceiling elements). The effect is a reduction of the sound that is reflected by these ceiling elements and thus a limitation of the volume level. In addition the ceiling is going slightly upward compared to the floor. Avoiding a parallel floor and ceiling also helps reduce the reflection of sound in the line. Certainly any sound created by the guests in the line will not disappear but at least will be made more bearably.

In case of the Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop the ceiling and wall elements are not plane as they are supposed to give the (false) impression of being made out of currogated metal, to be exact to be the backside of a thin sheet of currogated metal that also form the outside of the building. However, as already detailed the interior wall / ceiling is actually a separate element in this case as various infrastrucutre elements (such as cables, air condition ducts etc. are placed between the interior and the exterior wall). Nevertheless, the interior wall / ceiling elements have been created to give the impression of currogated metal sheets – with a twist. To reduce sound reflection here as well the wall / ceiling elements have been similar perforated as well as can be seen in the pictures. Another examplte that the little things make the difference – or as one could say: the little details make the Disney difference…

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