February 7, 2014

America’s Cup Organizers Threaten To Sail Away From SF's Bay

Perhaps they’re just playing hardball, but with the City requesting rent payments for pier space rather than incentives for holding the race in San Francisco, organizers for the America's Cup have pushed back their deadline for announcing the host city for the regatta in 2017 in order to evaluate four competing proposals according to the Chronicle.

First Published: February 7, 2014 8:00 AM

Comments from "Plugged In" Readers

Barrage of "good riddance" style posts from the we-don't-need-more-tourists crowd in 5...4...3...

Posted by: formidable doer of the nasty at February 7, 2014 9:57 AM

It seems like San Francisco should be in a good position for the next race. It was fairly successful last time. And the incremental cost should be lower than doing it in a new city. These public statement looks like hardball posturing.

Posted by: Wai Yip Tung at February 7, 2014 10:57 AM

How dare The City attempt to negotiate the best possible deal; we should just roll over and give a multi-billionaire everything he asks for.

I have to admit that Doer raises a good point. San Francisco is such an ghost town in late summer.

Posted by: SimpleSimon at February 7, 2014 11:27 AM

whoi cares? the america's cup was a complete failure anyway. nobody went.

Posted by: moto mayhem at February 7, 2014 11:38 AM

moto mayhem, I do hope you are joking, a la Yogi Berra - "no one went there because it was too crowded".

Once Oracle had the chance of winning, the races were hugely attended. I've worked next to the Embarcadero for 20 years and have never seen so many people, bikes and cars as I did in the final races. Imagine Giants game crowds but multiplied several times.

Posted by: anon at February 7, 2014 11:52 AM

I absolutely think we should go for it, but with a sober assessment of the costs and benefits. I predict that it will end up in SF unless 1) Larry just WANTS to have it around his island paradise or 2) another city is a sucker and over-promises.

Posted by: curmudgeon at February 7, 2014 12:04 PM

The cup was good for the City, for sailing and for the AC Organization - but the City should stick to their guns and not let the race organizers have their way. They want to host here, fine, then in exchange for an outstanding venue, no free lunches. They have to pay all taxes, follow all local ordinances, and pay rent for the use of the piers. They want to go to San Diego and Sail 10 miles off shore and have nobody watch, adios amigos.

Posted by: SFHelmut at February 7, 2014 12:15 PM

anon. the city lost a lot of money. there were less than 25% of the people than was predicted for the entire stretch of the americas cup

Posted by: moto mayhem at February 7, 2014 12:44 PM

Formidable: Was the 2013 'Cup responsible for "more" tourists at all, or did it just offer something to do with the same number of tourists as would have come here anyway? That is, was there a measurable increase in visitors due to the race? If not, then the cup can pay rent like anybody else and pound sand for special treatment.

Posted by: EH at February 7, 2014 12:55 PM

Naturally, pre-rich wannabes like Formidable just lurrv the idea of the city giving away millions of dollars to billionaires. Yay for socialism (for the rich, that is)!

Posted by: Ellis at February 7, 2014 12:55 PM

The city took a bath on the last races due to low attendance, and I think it is only fair that they negotiate in the best interests of the tax payers. I don't think America's Cup is going to find a better venue than SF, unless they want to host it in the east bay.

Tourism is great, but it makes no sense if it is at a loss.

Posted by: Mark Ballew at February 7, 2014 1:34 PM

@Ellis - the sales tax revenue likely more than made up for the City "shortfall". And in any event, there's something to be said for being a world-class city with world-class events... for haveing the ability to pull off high-profile events that will continue to promote the city and bring in tourists long after the event itself is over.

Frankly I don't want to live in a zero-sum city where every dollar is parsed out on a most-needed, critical expenditure only basis - with drab public buildings and an absence of great civic celebrations and events. If that were all there is - what's the point of being here?

Posted by: Sierrajeff at February 7, 2014 1:59 PM

Did the city government of San Diego ever have to pay so much to host an America's Cup? I doubt it.
This could change if Larry decides to buy a home in La Jolla.

BTW- Larry has however reached DEEP into his own pockets to expand the Indian Wells Tennis Stadium complex (near Palm Springs) about 10 miles from his home that has its own 18 hole private golf course. (You fly over it when landing at PSP airport, it is next to the Ritz Carlton in the hills above Rancho Mirage) I don't think he gets any money from taxpayers for his tennis events down there that bring in a LOT more visitors ( 300K last year during events) and much more lucrative world wide television rights)

Posted by: anon94123 at February 7, 2014 2:27 PM

NO MORE EVENTS. All of the sudden, SF bends over backwards for events, events, events! More concerts and sports games at the windowless frisbee...ooops...I mean the Warriors Arena. Outside Lands and Treasure Island keeping neighbors up until the late hours. Destroy the Yerba Buena Gardens neighborhood to stuff more overpaid techies into "conventions". The working class evicted by the thousands, and yet let's entertain the billionaires at the cost of the tax payers by sailing silly little boats around.

The residents of San Francisco do NOT want big events like these! Leave that to other cities.

No more condos. No more sports. No more skyscrapers. No more tech or big business. Our city is dying under a tsunami of greed, greed, and more greed.

Posted by: Hawkins at February 7, 2014 3:31 PM

I have an idea for an event, if SF needs one more. Why not put all the techies and gentrifiers in a gigantic Hunger Games in Golden Gate Park? The one survivor can keep their tech-ie 1% penthouse and the rest of us will finally get the housing we deserve. How about that for an event???

Of course, I'm only kidding. I don't wish death on anybody, even techies. I just want them to move somewhere that actually wants them. The Bay Area is NOT the place.

Posted by: Hawkins at February 7, 2014 3:36 PM

I find it ironic people who spew hatred toward techies... on the internet.

Posted by: sf at February 7, 2014 3:57 PM

Oracle played this card last time and the city fell for it. Fool me once...

Posted by: enzo at February 7, 2014 4:05 PM

im not a techie, but they bring more to this city than most other people. they are educated, bring jobs, spend at restaurants, bring tax revenue, and are usually pretty well behaved.

would you rather have bankers or lawyers? no offense to anyone. my wifes a lawyer:)

Posted by: moto mayhem at February 7, 2014 4:12 PM

I don't hate techies, they just have no place in my city.

Posted by: Hawkins at February 7, 2014 4:13 PM

@ moto mayhem - I would rather have artists, activists, writers, immigrants, educators, and blue collar workers. The women and men who put the SOUL into this city.

Techies, bankers, and lawyers alike can all find a different playground for the 1%. This is not their city.

Posted by: Hawkins at February 7, 2014 4:19 PM

@Hawkins: bwahahahaha! "Your city"? Not any more there big guy. Prepare to be displaced. Tell me where you live so I can buy your building and Ellis it.

PS, I'm an immigrant. But I'm an immigrant who owns a tech company. How does that fit into your worldview of who "belongs"?

Posted by: Jimmy (not a Real San Franciscan (TM)) at February 7, 2014 4:23 PM

@SierraJeff

I believe that you are wrong. Even taking into account retail, hotel and payroll taxes, the city expected to lose 2.7 million dollars.

Posted by: DukeLaw at February 7, 2014 4:24 PM

Ellis act ME? Good luck. I pay my rent on time and know plenty of the best attorneys if you ever so much as threaten me with eviction for any reason. I'm smart, and I try to educate my fellow renters on their rights and how to protect themselves from greedy landlords. Once I'm in my unit, I have the right to stay there at a price I can afford for as long as I choose to.

Immigrants in tech? Interesting...way to stab your community on the back by trying to please "massa". Oh who cares if we gentrify immigrant families and drive up the cost of living for our own, as long as we can profit off the corporate greed that is killing our city. I'm sure your community views you as one of their own, and not a traitor to the 1%...but it's OK, you can still connect to your culture via a bastardized "fusion" version of your home cuisine for $65 on a gentrified street of your choice.

Posted by: Hawkins at February 7, 2014 4:29 PM

$2.7 million? That's all? The city lost that much while you typed that response.

And Hawkins, why don't you just leave, nobody in San Francisco wants your close-minded attitude. San Francisco is about being open and welcoming to all walks of life!

Posted by: R at February 7, 2014 4:30 PM

@R - Correctin. San Francisco WAS about being open and welcoming to all walks of life. Then the techies and the developers changed everything.

Perhaps I should leave. I look at the skyline additions and want to weep, it is nothing like the San Francisco that us real San Franciscans have loved. But 50 story scars aside, I still love this Grand Dame, and am fighting viciously to make sure those who deserve her get to keep her.

Posted by: Hawkins at February 7, 2014 4:36 PM

P.S. You can't win against an Ellis eviction. Sorry. Just ask Uncle Ted:

"'Ellis Act evictions are impossible to fight,' admitted Ted Gullickson, the head of the San Francisco Tenants Union."

Posted by: R at February 7, 2014 4:37 PM

"@R - Correctin. San Francisco WAS about being open and welcoming to all walks of life. Then the techies and the developers changed everything."

Oh, so you're welcoming to all walks of life unless you don't like them. Got it.

Posted by: R at February 7, 2014 4:45 PM

Funny how some like Hawkins could say that "San Francisco [should be] about being open and welcoming to all walks of life" then in the same sentence basically saying that techies are not welcome.

This is the hypocrisy of our current situation. A certain branch of the progressive movement has transformed the "everyone's welcome mantra" into "we will welcome all the people that think like us, and then some immigrants as long as they are poor and do not make us have to change".

Then of course there's the blatant self-preservation of people who pay peanuts to live in the most expensive city in America while their landlords have to make do with much less rent for no reason at all except tenant seniority.

You can't have it both ways. And the more you resist, the stronger gentrification will be. Gentrification is like quicksand: the more you'll battle it, the faster and deeper you'll sink. Fighting for rent control and against gentrification forced out the middle class and let the wealthy sharks who are now having a field day with this city.

Yes I work in Tech, and no, my burritos cost way less than $10.

Posted by: lol at February 7, 2014 4:55 PM

Hawkins is a parasite. He may know some good lawyers but he can't afford them. And besides, if he's offered 30-40K in cold cash to get the F out, he'll take it because that'll be more money than he's ever seen. It's not "his city" any more than it's the city of that homeless crack addict you almost ran over on 6th Street last week. That's why he has to pay someone else to let him live under their roof.

Anything else, tough guy?

Posted by: formidable doer of the nasty at February 7, 2014 5:15 PM

^ Careful not to get baited into acting in a way that plays into a negative stereotype of tech workers. That's probably exactly what Hawkings wants.

Posted by: anon2 at February 7, 2014 5:35 PM

"Techies, bankers, and lawyers alike can all find a different playground for the 1%. This is not their city."

Well i think most people disagree. 1st of all, the vast majority of tech workers are not in the 1%. and they are the soul of the city at this point. SF is a global tech city. It is not known globally for its artists or educators or blue collar workers. you are in the wrong city. this is a tech city.

Posted by: moto mayhem at February 7, 2014 5:41 PM

"trying to please "massa".

"Massa"? I'm speechless.

Now back to plotting my ascent OUT of the 1% ...

Posted by: Jimmy (not a Real San Franciscan (TM)) at February 7, 2014 6:52 PM

"Techies, bankers, and lawyers" are nothing new in SF:

- Stanford was a lawyer

- Judah, Hallidie, and Sutro were all techies of their time

- Wells Fargo, B of A

....

Posted by: Jake at February 7, 2014 6:57 PM

Tech is indeed ingrained in the culture. Do not forget that some techies started off as hippies 40 years ago. Some of the traditional tech culture had to do with questioning the establishment, in particular the big buys of the time like IBM, HP and others.

PC, Internet, Mobile computing, Social Media, Cloud, this is the 3rd or 4rth tech revolution going on right now.

Posted by: lol at February 7, 2014 9:18 PM

The city must be destroyed to save it. It won't be made whole until the skyscrapers are dismantled and the jobs are moved to Texas.

Posted by: woolie at February 7, 2014 11:00 PM

"Our City is dying under a tsunami of greed, greed, and more greed"

Ha! What garbage. This city was founded on greed- remember all the yayhoos who swarmed for gold leaving their rotting stink-pots behind? America was built on greed: pillaging, 300 years of slavery, and the greatest land-grab / real-estate boondoggle in the history of human civilization (hello Catellus).

But through it all, dedicated fools were granted the freedom to risk everything to create culture & technology and the wonderous place we call home. But they first found a place to live.

So Ellison & Ed should negotiate the next AC deal to ultimately include 6,000 new units of mixed-income housing (affordable, workforce, and a couple of 1%er penthouses), and commercial incubators on the piers and proximate land. And stick a red-hot poker into the eyes of shanahan, peskin, the stewarts, and the rest.

Posted by: rubber_chicken at February 9, 2014 11:56 AM

I'm not greedy.

I just seek the optimal result.

Posted by: Jimmy The House Flipper at February 9, 2014 12:13 PM

Lol @ Hawkins "fusion" cuisine comment. 1993 called and it wants its go to derogatory foodie buzzword back.

Posted by: Truth at February 9, 2014 12:42 PM

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