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Carmichael Presentation by Rod Camerion

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Presentation by Rod Cameron on the benefits of convention centres. Presented at the Carmichael Lecture hosted by the Downtown Halifax Business commission February 2010.
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  • 1. Convention Centres in Context: Defining “Success” From a Community Perspective<br />Carmichael Lecture <br />Halifax, 2010<br />
  • 2. A Convention Centre is an Investment:<br /><ul><li>Not just initial, but ongoing
  • 3. Needs to deliver an appropriate return
  • 4. In this industry, are two measures of success:
  • 5. What works for the market
  • 6. What works for the community</li></li></ul><li>The Competitive Landscape:<br /><ul><li>Everyone wants the business
  • 7. New convention facilities, destinations appearing globally
  • 8. Industry expectations have evolved; need to meet these to be competitive
  • 9. Centres are expanding/renovating to:</li></ul>Increase overall space and flexibility<br />Respond to changing event formats<br />Address competitive factors (facilities; finish, sustainability) <br />
  • 10. How Planners Choose:<br /><ul><li>Facilities that meet event program requirements
  • 11. Air access and cost
  • 12. Number / quality of hotel rooms
  • 13. Clean / attractive / popular city
  • 14. Security / safety / crime
  • 15. Supportive destination / local members
  • 16. Local attractions for off-site programs
  • 17. Address rotational factors</li></li></ul><li>How About the Community?<br />Centres play three key roles:<br /><ul><li>A revenue role
  • 18. A community enhancement role
  • 19. An economic development role</li></li></ul><li>The Revenue Role:<br /><ul><li>They generate delegate / exhibitor spending in many different sectors
  • 20. They promote visits; utilize hospitality infrastructure (off season implications)
  • 21. They promote tourism via pre / post , accompanying persons, return visits
  • 22. They attract / support new infrastructure investment (e.g. hotels)</li></li></ul><li>The Community Enhancement Role:<br /><ul><li>They bring world class knowledge and expertise into the community
  • 23. Can create national / global exposure
  • 24. They provides facilities / services for community events and celebrations
  • 25. They generate non-resident tax revenues that can be applied to community needs</li></li></ul><li>The Economic Development Role:<br /><ul><li>They help address economic, professional, academic strategies
  • 26. They attract business audiences that wouldn’t otherwise visit
  • 27. They help position the city and expose delegates to investment opportunities
  • 28. They act as a vehicle for local business / professional groups to host colleagues
  • 29. They create opportunities to showcase for local products and services</li></li></ul><li>A Factor in Economic Recovery:<br /><ul><li>Conventions and exhibitions facilitate research, technology, academics
  • 30. They support personal and professional development
  • 31. They are critical to business stimulation and advancement
  • 32. They help build networks and discourage economic isolation</li></li></ul><li>Assessing Value:<br /><ul><li>We tend to focus on direct impacts like revenue, but…
  • 33. Conferences, conventions are all about outcomes
  • 34. Value is what they accomplish, not just how much delegates spend
  • 35. Many of these outcomes impact the host community, so
  • 36. Centres should complement overall economic development strategies</li></li></ul><li>The Physical Context:<br /><ul><li>Centres are only part of the product
  • 37. The balance is made up of the community experience (hotels, F&B, entertainment, attractions)
  • 38. That experience is enhanced when these are more accessible to delegates
  • 39. Has major implications for centre location
  • 40. Ideal is a “precinct” that offers majority of delegate amenities in close proximity</li></li></ul><li>A Role in Area Revitalization:<br /><ul><li>Delegates are a “captive clientele”
  • 41. Help re-animate the surrounding area
  • 42. Diversify customer base, seasonality for adjacent businesses
  • 43. Provide rationale for new investment
  • 44. Encourage business activities that feature local culture / experiences
  • 45. Support new (i.e., group) product creation</li></li></ul><li>Site Selection Must Balance Market, Community Expectations<br /><ul><li>Both business, community benefit from complementary surroundings
  • 46. Mixed record in using centres as anchors for area redevelopment
  • 47. Wrong choice isolates centre from the city, impacting ROI and marketability</li></li></ul><li>Vancouver Convention Centre<br />
  • 48. San Diego 1985<br />
  • 49. San Diego Today<br />
  • 50. Jacksonville, Florida<br />
  • 51. A Long Term Commitment:<br /><ul><li>Markets take time to develop; patient investment required
  • 52. Existing centres have a market advantage, but must reposition following redevelopment
  • 53. Government has prominent role, but…
  • 54. Other stakeholders will have to support actively and consistently</li></li></ul><li>In Conclusion….<br /><ul><li>Halifax has distinct advantages (location, access, market history)
  • 55. Current facilities limit competitiveness
  • 56. A new / expanded facility provides an opportunity to address limitations, but..
  • 57. Can also complement broader economic, community strategies
  • 58. Everything from facility design to market priorities will depend on how “success” is defined</li></li></ul><li>Convention Centres in Context: Defining “Success” From a Community Perspective<br />Carmichael Lecture <br />Halifax, 2010<br />
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