p. 80 p. 82 p. 84

The imminent arrival in central Florida of Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Snow White, and Pluto has ignited a real estate boom on the fringes of Disney World (page 72) unmatched in scope or vigor since the first crowd of land speculators swarmed into the state a half-century ago. At a rough guess, more than $200-million in property has changed hands-at prices up to 500 times the 1965 value-in the six years since the late Walt Disney revealed that he would build Disneyland East, 15 mi. southwest of Orlando.

The hottest bidding lately has been among the major hotel and motel chains and oil companies that are racing against the clock to put up enough facilities to serve the 10-million tourists expected at Disney World in its first year. So feverish has the competition for land become that property that went for peanuts in 1965 now goes for $75,000 an acre and more.

David Nusbickel, a veteran Orlando real estate broker, helped to put together the 27,000-acre tract on which Disney World itself is located, at an average price of $350 an acre. Now he is dealing with the big companies and says happily: "These guys, who obviously know their business, don't even blink an eye when you quote them a price of $75,000 to $150,000 for an acre of property that maybe went for $3,000 a few years back. All they want to know is whether it is available and that there is no problem in buying it."