LA, Anaheim Looking To Take Comic-Con From San Diego
Local Hotels Asked To Lock-In 2015 Comic-Con Rates
Last Updated: 1120 days ago
San Diego is holding its breath as the Comic-Con International Board of Directors prepares to make a decision on where it will call home between 2013 and 2015.San Diego, which has hosted the convention since its inception in 1970, remains in the running to keep Comic-Con. Anaheim and Los Angeles are also contenders to host the popular event, and a decision is expected in the next month.A decision was supposed to have been made already but changes to each city's proposal forced a delay.Last month, the board visited the Los Angeles Convention Center where officials presented a compelling argument to move the world's largest comic book and entertainment convention to Los Angeles. Included in Los Angeles' bid is "L.A. Live," a $2.5 billion development that includes the Staples Center, Nokia Theater and the Convention Center -- facilities that would be at Comic-Con's disposal."I'm not sure that any city can compete with this," said Michael Roth, Vice President of Communications for AEG, the company that owns Staples Center, home of the Los Angeles Lakers, Clippers and Kings."We've got bigger facilities, more of them, just within a one-mile radius of the convention center. We have 200 restaurants. We have L.A. Live," said Los Angeles First Deputy Mayor Austin Beutner.San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders wasn't impressed with the Los Angeles pitch, and said, "We think they'll be here from now on. It's a uniquely San Diego event."Sanders said San Diego has tradition and experience on its side."I also think ease of putting it on,' you know, how to do it here. You've got the schematic down," Sanders said.Comic-Con generates roughly $40 million to $50 million every year for San Diego's economy, and that's why the city has offered Comic-Con officials $500,000 in hotel tax revenue over the next five years to stay. The city is also trying to lock in rates for conventioneers, guaranteeing hotel rooms during that time.In an interview with Comic Book Resources, LA Inc. Senior Vice President Michael Krouse mocked San Diego's bid, saying: "Our offer is superior to their offer I will say that [San Diego's] offer is a chump-change offer."Krouse then said the L.A. Live development trumped anything San Diego had to offer."Our districts far exceed what Gaslamp is. Gaslamp is one street, a block and a half. However you want to call it. We are eight times what Gaslamp is," added Krouse.The convention center is also a problem for San Diego, as the combined exhibit space and meeting room space is smaller than what Anaheim and Los Angeles each have to offer. San Diego has 820,000 sq. ft., Los Angeles has 867,000 sq. ft. and Anaheim has 945,000 sq. ft.Comic-Con International spokesman David Glanzer said a decision should be made within the next month."Each city has incredible pluses and each city has some minuses and what we have to do is make sure the decision we make ends up addressing all of the issues," Glanzer said.The winning city will have a three year deal to host Comic-Con through 2015.