San Francisco strikes back
While the feeling in Europe is that the venue for the 34th America's Cup is likely to be Italy, so yesterday San Francisco struck back, the Mayor's Office announcing details of the deal that would be put in place should BMW Oracle Racing choose to hold the event in the home waters of the Golden Gate Yacht Club.
The 'term sheet' lays out the details of the deal to host the 34th America's Cup based on agreements reached between the America’s Cup Committee of the Golden Gate Yacht Club and the City of San Francisco. If San Francisco is selected, this will provide a framework enabling the prompt negotiation of a legally binding Host City Agreement, establishing the terms and conditions under which San Francisco would be prepared to host the America’s Cup event.
“We believe there’s no better place on earth than San Francisco Bay to defend the America’s Cup and bring millions of new fans from around the world to the oldest international sailing competition,” said Mayor Gavin Newsom. “This agreement establishes the strong partnership between the City, the BMW Oracle Racing Team and the entire community if San Francisco is fortunate to be selected as the Host City for the 34 th America’s Cup. The entire City and State of California are united behind bringing the America’s Cup – and all the economic benefits, jobs and excitement that come with it – to San Francisco.”
“We are fully united in our efforts to bring the America’s Cup to San Francisco, and this term sheet outlines the framework of these efforts to highlight San Francisco as the only location for this event,” said Board of Supervisors President David Chiu. “San Franciscans would love to see this world class sailing race on our world class waterfront. The economy of the entire San Francisco Bay Area region will benefit exponentially from hosting the America’s Cup in Spring 2013.”
Hosting the Event in San Francisco would generate significant public benefits for the City, the Mayor's Office claims, including providing a catalyst for the repair, improvement and productive reuse of City piers along the City’s central and southern waterfront that are currently in a such state of grave disrepair that there is no other viable plan to pay for the needed repairs. Hosting the America’s Cup would also generate an enormous amount of economic development in a very short period of time, including over 9,000 jobs and more than $1.4 billion of new economic activity.
“Having been exposed during my youth to sailing and the America’s Cup, I know we have everything race organizers need, including the expertise and will, to host the ‘World Cup’ of Sailing and make this event a monumental success,” said Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi. “The San Francisco Bay will provide a breathtaking arena which will enable millions of everyday people to enjoy the excitement of this historic sport as never before.”
Under the terms of the agreement, the City will meet the following schedule regarding the 34th America’s Cup:
October 2010-October 2011 – Complete all studies and documentation to support environmental review and permitting for the Event. On a parallel course and during that same period, the Port and the Event Authority will finalise the terms of the long term Event Lease documents that will permit all of the uses related to the Event and any currently approved longer-term development uses for the Legacy Sites.
November 2011 – Present long term Event Lease, environmental review documentation and permits for approval.
December 2011-December 2012 – Complete infrastructure improvements.
Spring 2013 – 34th America’s Cup commences.
A number of regulatory, environmental and local community organisations have already pledged support for the Event and will play important roles in meeting the schedule set forth above, including the following:
State of California – both the State Legislature and Governor Schwarzenegger
Port of San Francisco
Recreation and Parks Commission
Bay Conservation and Development Commission
Metropolitan Transportation Commission
San Francisco International Airport
Golden Gate National Recreation Area
The Bar Pilots Association
The Water Emergency Transit Agency
The San Francisco Maritime Commerce and Bay Council
The Sierra Club
Save the Bay
Environmental Defense Fund
Planning and Conservation League of California
Clean Water Action CA
Golden Gate Audubon Society
CA League of Conservation Voters
San Francisco Convention and Visitors Bureau
The San Francisco Chamber of Commerce
The Bay Area Council
The Examiner newspaper in San Francisco reports that instead of government subsides likely to be on offer from a European host port, the deal with San Francisco would involve their handing over several of the waterfront piers in San Francisco, along with long term development rights as well as raising $270 million in private donations and sponsorships. Full article here