The Main Agreement of 1987: paving the way for Disneyland Paris

The French authorities and The Walt Disney Company signed the Main Agreement for the Creation and Operation of Euro Disneyland in France on 24 March 1987. This paved the way for the tourist destination, providing a unique opportunity for growth and development to the east of Paris. Signing the Main Agreement signalled the beginning of a shared journey both sides of the Atlantic.

Convention_1987

The French authorities and The Walt Disney Company signed the Main Agreement for the Creation and Operation of Euro Disneyland in France on 24 March 1987. This paved the way for the tourist destination, providing a unique opportunity for growth and development to the east of Paris. Signing the Main Agreement signalled the beginning of a shared journey both sides of the Atlantic.

Disneyland Paris and the French authorities will be celebrating 30th anniversary of the Main Agreement of 1987 in March. Signing the document at the Hôtel Matignon gave approval for the creation and operation of a Disney destination planned for France, specifically Marne-la-Vallée – in close proximity to Paris. This was the so-called birth certificate of what would soon become the number one tourist destination in Europe.

One needs to go back to the 1980s to have any real understanding of this public-private partnership. Created under the Development and Town Planning Master Plan 15 years earlier, Marne-la-Vallée was struggling to be an attractive economic draw. It had a population of just 150,000 (compared to 320,000 in 2013). In actual fact, the Ile-de-France was strongly polarised in favour of the western area of the Ile-de-France and the La Défense business district. It was against this backdrop that the French Government and local authorities were hoping to reset the balance of regional economic activity by accelerating development to the east of Paris. The Walt Disney Company also wanted to develop – and locate theme parks in Europe.

The ambitions of The Walt Disney Company and the French authorities became one. And so it was that the French Prime Minister Jacques Chirac, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Walt Disney Company Michael Eisner, the Conseil Régional d’Île-de-France, the Conseil Général de Seine-et-Marne, the RATP (Parisian transport operator) and EPA Marne (local Planning and Development Authority) signed the Main Agreement on 24 March 1987. This marked the beginning of a unique and unprecedented adventure for France and a private company.

In 1985, after looking at vacation models in Europe, the Disney Group narrowed its choice down to a number of towns in France and Spain. The case put forward by Marne-la-Vallée stood out because of its proximity to Paris and the desire of the French authorities to develop access in particular and tourism in general. It took fifteen months to reach the final Main Agreement, which was signed in March1987.” — Director, Business Development for Disney International during the negotiations.

The Main Agreement of 1987 defined the roles of all stakeholders in the development of the area and the new town of Marne-la-Vallée over a period of 30 years*. The Walt Disney Company and the Euro Disney Group took charge of the development of 2,230 hectares of land, which had to be in partnership with local communities and EPA Marne and EPA France. The Main Agreement specifically allowed for the construction of a theme park, several hotels and a golf course. The public authorities undertook to develop the infrastructure for access to the site, extending the RER A railway line and the A4 motorway and building an SNCF train station (scheduled for 1991).

Work began at the Disneyland Paris construction site in 1988 – Europe’s biggest ever after the Channel Tunnel connecting France and the United Kingdom.

*The Main Agreement of 1987 allowed for development over the next 30 years and was due to end in 2017. An amendment was signed on 14 September 2010, extending the Main Agreement until 2030.

 

0 thoughts on “The Main Agreement of 1987: paving the way for Disneyland Paris”

  1. Hi, there! I’m from Brazil, and I’ll be at DisneylandParis on my 40th birthday with my family (a husband and 3 daughters). May I have my “magical birthday ever”? This include a character? How I order it? We’re ordering a 1day/2parks ticket, and we have a doubt about the time of Paris Express. It leaves Disnenyland at 8pm, is that time AFTER the fireworks and night parade? We’re very excited with this family travel,and we’ll be waiting ansiously for your reply

  2. Wonderful article, please more like this!

    I’ve never seen that castle elevation artwork before, could you post it in a higher resolution? Would love to thoroughly investigate the details of it.

    Kind regards
    Disneyland Paris Treasures

  3. Greate post. Keep writing such kind of information on your blog. Im really impressed by your blog.

  4. Appreciating the time and energy you put into your site and in depth information you present. It’s great to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the same out of date rehashed information. Wonderful read! I’ve bookmarked your site and I’m including your RSS feeds to my Google account.|

  5. What’s the point of attracting adults and “reconnecting them with childhooh emotions and memories” if once they’re there you’ll treat them like they’re not welcome?
    Maybe the problem is not our perception is wrong. Maybe the problem is you really don’t want us to go.

  6. There’s a Santa Fe style hotel? Oh my! Will have to go back and stay there! Only hotel I had time to see on my first visit was the Disneyland Hotel on my way into the park to see Captain Eo after it re-opened in June 2010. I was on a one-day visit via the Eurostar from London (on holiday there from Australia) so very limited time – too limited. But I loved it.

  7. I’ve been 4 times to Disneyland Paris in the last 3 years and each time the service has been absolutely dredful and not even apologetic – would love to see how this changes.

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  12. Also my question:-) Is there a way to buy something although i’m not working at Disneyland Paris?

  13. So, so sad to see this icon show close! I first saw it in California in 1987 and was blown away by what was then incredible 3D technology, as well as Michael’s performance. When I visited Disneyland Paris for the first (and thus far, only) time on 24 June 2010 I was on a EuroStar day trip to the park from London which I was visiting for Michael Jackson 1st anniversary events with his UK fans. When I heard that Disneyland Paris and other Disney Parks were re-opening the film as a tribute to Michael, I HAD to make the journey across the channel to see it again. Needless to say, I made the most of the opportunity for repeat screenings on that day. And though I’ve since seen it repeatedly in Anaheim and Tokyo (shortly before it closed there last year) I’ll never, ever forget seeing it on the big screen for the first time since the 80s at Disneyland Paris. I’m not sure I want to go back now. 🙁

  14. It’s a shame this classic has to go, really!
    I’m glad I got the chance to experience it once again with the tribute performance.

    It was not quite the same since many of the original effects and the look and feel of the cinema were missing, still the old 3D glasses/technique and and analogue! print/and projector was used, which was and is kind of lazy from Disney. Also, the print was very worn out the last time I’ve seen it and should have been replaced long ago.

    But, still better than no Captain EO.

    Since Captain EO will never return to the Disney parks, please release a worthy blu-ray of this classic masterpiece (in 3D and 2D). I’m sure plenty of Disney-, Michael Jackson-, Anjelica Huston, Franics Ford Coppola- and George Lucas-Fans would buy it in an instant!

    I sure would!

  15. Why oh why is this closing?

    Have seen it several times at Disneyland Paris in the last couple of years and and each showing was packed out! Judging by everyone’s reaction on the way out, the audience clearly loved both the film and its effects.

    Bad decision, Disney 🙁

  16. The reason it has closed is that jardly anyone watches. Figures have dwindled and have been for years. It has been declining in the mast few years. Everyone moans and groans but it costs Disney to keep it running and if the audiences ain’t coming, who can afford to keep it.

  17. between Oxford and CambridgeONSet the price of a $268look on approximately $358 and buyers will flip away. While you are it true the quick gladness in a bestthe states in the nation with such as AC Milan red and black

  18. Would it be possible to meet with some one in hr on the 2nd idecember2015 to discuss student placement with you. Students would be 18 plus studying travel and tourism funded via Erasmus
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  19. We used these just after Christmas. Such a vast improvement since our last visit in summer 2014. Well done! I still had to wait from about 9am to get a good spot in the queue, but then we only waited about 10 minutes in the actual pavilion, as opposed to 70 minutes last time!

  20. We had a wonderfull new years evening at euro disney 2015 – 2016!!!!
    It was fantastic!!
    Thank you!

  21. Will the foliage be refurbished? Many leaves and small branches are missing and spoil the attraction so hopefully these will be refurbished.

  22. Hello We are a family of 4 with my husband and 2 children.I am 32 weeks pregnant.With the easy access card will I have access to attractions with my family.

  23. would changing the perception around DP to attract adults or a particular age groups not be at the expense of other age groups eg kids, teenagers.

  24. What a shame that they cast aside the park’s heritage, people’s memories and their love of DLP by destroying the named stones and replacing them with bland slabs.
    There were a few broken and loose ones, but surely they could have been kept and relayed to a better standard than they had previously.
    It has really dampened our DLP experience. What next? Removal of the castle?

  25. it’sasmallworld is more beautifulthan before.

    I will ride to it’s a smallworld during go to disneyland paris.

  26. i come to disney land for 20 years every year 2or3 times
    i am a real disney fan i collect it also but my complain is this year
    when y order to stay in the hotel why did they not mention
    that there is so many attraction close in the park you mention about the hotel but let also know about what happen in the park
    i hope you understand why i writhe this
    i hope that you will reply
    thanks yolande

  27. I want cast menbers . business chaienge back stage new shw works
    my challenge .
    U.S.A I want art work project menbers.

  28. Hello, I am staying at the Hotel on 9/23/16. That day is my daughter’s birthday. Do you have the opportunity to purchase a cake?

  29. Can anyone help with getting in touch with photopass for Disneyland Paris. Tried sending email through contact us but email keeps coming back undeliverable. All photos are not coming up and need them to find my photos.

  30. Not Impressed! Big Thunder mountain is one of my favorite Disney Rides! Shut! Simlarly, the Star Wars events are apparently unavailable.No mention of these attractions being shut when my booking was made in June. My grandson, for whom we arranged this trip, has extatically reached the height limit, and a star wars addict/devotee will now be denied these pleasures. Will there be a refund/discount offered?

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