FUTUROSCOPE - POITIERS FRANCE - 1985
ENGINEERING ASSESSMENT, MID-COURSE CORRECTION
Futuroscope is the second most visited theme park in France,
Euro-Disney being the first. This most innovative project was established in
1984. It was paid for by the French Ministry of Education. Its purpose as was to excite the youth of France to take more interest in entering science and technology
The initial phase of the project, costing some $30 million
U.S., had produced a number of remarkable architectural structures for which there was no obvious prescribed use. As the Government was about to expend an additional $60 million U.S. on Phase Two, the Doultons were retained to quietly assemble a team of U.S. theme park experts to assess the overall engineering viability of the ensuing phase.
The Doultons were to also to provide what was termed, a mid course correction as to how the park might best
evolve over time as an attraction, without losing its original intent, to stimulate the mind.
While the team of U.S. theme park experts felt that the
engineering was sound, they seriously questioned the cost-to-benefit ratio so the Doultons recommendation was not to proceed.
The Ministry of Education accepted this recommendation.
The Doultons’ second recommendation was to accept
the dynamic and unknown nature of the future and focus upon creating theatres employing exotic film formats which could be
altered as new systems were introduced. A number of producers were contracted
to provide product, IMAX, Iwerks, Showscan (USA) and Imagique (France).
By remaining faithful to its original theme, exploring
the potential of the future, Futuroscope is Europe’s most mind expanding and thought-proving themed attraction. It has grown from its original six theatres to contain 22 major attractions covering
all wide assortments of topics. Growing in popularity each year, adults, as well
as children, find its message of interest. Entry for Adults is 57 Euros and 30
Euros for Children.