Aug. 29 to
Sept. 2, 2002
BA 2002 Press Releases
SAN FRANCISCO IN 2002
FOR RELEASE FRIDAY, MARCH 12, 1999
4:00 PM PACIFIC STANDARD TIME (00:00/99-03-13 CUT/GMT)
Contact: Kevin Standlee <email@example.com >
SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA WORLDCON GROUP FILES SECOND BID,WILL BID FOR BOTH SAN FRANCISCO AND SAN JOSE
In an unprecedented move, the SF in 2002 Worldcon Bid Committee has filed a second Worldcon bid for a site in San Jose, California. The bid is for the same weekend, for the same committee, with different facilities.
"Until recently, our negotiations with the primary property we wanted to use in San Francisco, the Marriott, had been going well," said Kevin Standlee, the chair of the bid. "A few weeks ago, however, they wrote to us demanding a number of concessions, both financial and organizational, which would prevent us from being able to offer the type of Worldcon that fans expect."
"While we were prepared to continue negotiating with the Marriott, they have made it clear that we are not going to be able to reach an acceptable compromise," continued Standlee. "Instead, we are preparing a package similar to that used in San Francisco in 1993, although the convention would not be as spread out as ConFrancisco was. This would involve other hotels in the area of the San Francisco Moscone Convention Center, some of which are actually closer to the Moscone Center than the Marriott. Fortunately, there are now more hotels in San Francisco's downtown than there were in 1993."
While the SF in 2002 committee negotiated with the Marriott, the San Jose Convention and Visitors Bureau approached them with an attractive proposal. The site centered on the San Jose facility includes approximately 1500 hotel rooms as close to the McEnery Convention Center as the Marriott is to the Moscone Center. In addition, the San Jose facilities are less expensive to rent, include less-expensive parking, and are adjacent to a 24-hour-per-day light rail system that connects the Convention Center to more than 1000 additional hotel rooms.
San Jose is less than 50 miles from San Francisco. Two freeways and a regular rail service run directly between "The Heart of Silicon Valley" and "The City by the Bay." Travel time between the two cities is between 60 and 90 minutes. Even if the Worldcon is in San Jose, fans wishing to visit Alcatraz or Fisherman's Wharf would still be able to do so.
"San Francisco with the Marriott is a great site for a Worldcon," said Tom Whitmore, chair of the Operating Committee for the convention, "and we will continue to try to secure it. The other two possibilities, San Francisco without the Marriott, or San Jose, are both good, but are less than what we had hoped to offer. Our committee was undecided as to which was the best option. Using San Jose, California's third-largest city, will undoubtedly allow us to offer cheaper hotel rooms and membership prices; San Francisco is a world-class city with fabulous attractions that this committee has spent several years promoting. Which is best? The answer was obvious: we should let the voters choose."
Never before has one committee bid for two venues. "It's going to be fun," said Standlee. "We have put some excitement back into the race for 2002, and we get to throw one party with two sides. We're going to promote each site equally, and give full information about the advantages of each. And we certainly hope that anyone who wants to come to one will come to the other!"
"Fans should be aware that site negotiations are still continuing. We are still talking to the Marriott, and to other hotels in San Francisco. And we are still evaluating the San Jose site. Anyone wanting up-to-date information before voting should contact us through our web site, e-mail, at conventions, or by paper mail."
Reflecting the dual nature of the bid, the committee's name changes to "Bay Area in 2002," with the slogan "Now We're Between The Rock and a hard(ware) place," alluding to Alcatraz and the Silicon Valley.
Memberships in the Bay Area in 2002 bid at all classes (Pre-supporting, Pre-opposing, and Friend) remain unchanged from that of San Francisco in 2002, The previously announced cross-grade offer, whereby members of the now-withdrawn Seattle in 2002 Bid can take credit toward a membership in the San Francisco in 2002 Bid, also remains unchanged. The cross-grade offer is scheduled to continue through April 5, 1999.
Due to a scheduling conflict with the previous event using Moscone Center, the San Francisco in 2002 bid is for Friday through Tuesday, August 30 through September 3, 2002. The San Jose in 2002 bid is for the traditional Thursday through Monday, August 29 through September 2, 2002. The Committee filed both bids with the administering convention, Aussiecon Three, before the March 7 filing deadline.
Members of Aussiecon Three, the 1999 Worldcon, will vote on the site of the 2002 Worldcon. Aussiecon Three will issue site-selection ballots later this year. You must be an attending or supporting member of Aussiecon Three to vote.
The bid will post additional information on their web site, http://www.sfsfc.org/worldcon/, as it becomes available. Representatives of the bids plan to be at Eastercon, Minicon, and Norwescon over the Easter weekend to answer questions. Fans may also send questions to the bid via electronic mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by ordinary mail to PO Box 61363, Sunnyvale CA 94088-1363 USA.
The Bay Area in 2002 Combined Bid plans to release more information about its sites in Progress Report -1, scheduled for publication after Aussiecon Three produces the site selection ballot. In addition, the bid plans to send a letter to its more than 1,000 pre-supporting members explaining the decision sometime in March.
San Francisco in 2002, a committee of San Francisco Science Fiction Conventions, Inc. (the parent corporation of ConFrancisco, the 1993 Worldcon) is bidding for the right to host the 2002 Worldcon. Members of Aussiecon Three, the 1999 Worldcon in Melbourne, Australia, will vote to choose the site of the 2002 Worldcon.
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