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Moscone Expansion District gets final approval

02/05/13
New hotel assessment will provide two thirds of cost of convention center expansion

Feb. 5, 2013 – The San Francisco Board of Supervisors today approved the creation of the Moscone Expansion District (MED) which will provide the majority of funding for the expansion of the City’s convention center.

In a unanimous vote, the Board passed a resolution approving the establishment of the MED and three additional measures that will help finance the expansion through issuance of Certificates of Participation and allow the project to move forward in the environmental review process.

Hotel assessments from the MED will provide two thirds of the funding for costs of the expansion project. The other third will come from a continuation of funding from the City’s General Fund. Project costs are estimated to be $500 million.

The expansion of Moscone Center will add approximately 350,000 to 400,000 square feet to the convention center, including 80,000 or more square feet of contiguous exhibit, essential for attracting larger conventions.

“San Francisco Travel is proud to be continuing and expanding our public/private partnership with our City partners to transform the Moscone Center into a state-of-the-art facility that will be even more competitive in attracting conventions to our city,” said Joe D’Alessandro, president and CEO of the San Francisco Travel Association.

“San Francisco has already lost meetings representing $2.057 billion in direct spending as a result of space limitations for meetings with dates between 2010 and 2019. The existing three-building configuration of Moscone Center is effectively filled to capacity,” D’Alessandro continued. “Therefore, it is impossible to significantly grow the San Francisco convention market without providing additional meeting and exhibit space – especially contiguous exhibition space.”

“Investing in the expansion of our world class Moscone Center is absolutely essential for San Francisco because tourism dollars generated by activities at the convention center ripple into every neighborhood of the City through jobs, local purchases and taxes paid by visitors,” said Mayor Edwin L. Lee. “The City is proud to partner with the hotel and tourism industry to make this investment which will help grow our recovering economy and create jobs.”

Moscone Center currently hosts 1 million visitors each year and generates more than $1.6 billion in visitor spending. This spending contributes millions of dollars to the City’s General Fund and supports thousands of jobs.

Tourism is San Francisco’s major industry, generating almost $8.5 billion in economic activity, supporting more than 71,400 jobs, and contributing $524 million to the General Fund to help support neighborhood services such as police protection, parks, roads maintenance and firefighters.

The planned expansion of Moscone Center will benefit the City in many ways:

* It will create 3,424 long-term jobs (in addition to construction jobs).
* It will induce $713 million in direct spending in the first seven years after expansion opens.
* It will contribute $320 million more in incremental hotel tax revenues to the General Fund over the life of the District.

The district will begin collecting revenues in July 0f 2013 and construction of the expansion is anticipatged to begin November 2014 with completion anticipated in 2018.

The San Francisco Travel Association is the official tourism marketing organization for the City and County of San Francisco.

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Note to editors: Photos and press releases are available at http://www.sanfrancisco.travel/media/.

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