Boating Industry

January 2016

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January 2016 | Boating Industry | 21 I'm glad you brought up Bellingham. There have been some concerns about the environmental impact of the temporary docks based on earlier unaffi liated shows in Miami. How is the show addressing that? DAMMRICH: What was used in other shows was unencapsulated foam fl oatation and that foam breaks off, and it doesn't biode- grade and it fl oats around in the water and it's eaten by animals and it's bad for the environment. What we'll be using at the basin at Miami Marine Stadium Park … all of our fl oats are encapsulated foam. They are encapsulated in a hard plastic case, so there is no environmental impact. What are the some of the advantages Miami Marine Stadium is going to offer for the show as opposed to being out on Miami Beach? DAMMRICH: The No. 1 complaint about the show from consumers and exhibitors has always been traffi c and parking. We are investing a lot of money in a very comprehensive traffi c manage- ment and parking plan … to get people to and from the show. We have over 4,000 parking spaces on Vir- ginia Key adjacent to the show. We've got 10,000 more parking spaces in or near downtown Miami … and we'll be offering free shuttle buses from each of those parking locations to the front door of the show as well as water taxis from the American Airlines Arena and Bayside and other locations directly to the front door of the show. [Strictly Sail] has decided to stay at Bayside, but again we'll be offering water taxi service be- tween the two shows. It's a 15-minute water taxi ride between the shows. It is going to be a boat show on an island paradise. It is the most spectacular location for a boat show that you will fi nd anywhere in the world, with everything all in one place. Building a show from scratch like this is not an opportunity many show producers have, es- pecially with a show this big. We're going to be offering food service concessions that are noth- ing like you've ever seen at any boat show in terms of quality and variety. It's going to be a boat show with a very sizable party atmosphere. When you stand on the shoreline or out where the docks are going to be, the view of the downtown Miami skyline is spectacular. People are going to be in the boating mood when they are at this boat show. It is going to be a great selling environment. Just to make sure this is clear, you're envi- sioning Miami Marine Stadium Park & Basin as the new permanent home of the show? DAMMRICH: Yes, we are. The fact of the mat- ter is … the Miami Beach Convention Center, we may fi nd some use for that going forward, but right now this is going to be the home of the show. The convention center may become a sat- ellite home for something, but we don't know yet. We've got two or three years to fi gure that out. What made this location the right place to host the show? DAMMRICH: Well, there was no other place. Mayor Lindsay in Key Biscayne says why don't you do it in Marlins Park? Well, we looked at Marlins Park and we could accommodate about half the show. Any other locations that we used would have required the show to be broken up amongst two or three other locations. And I don't mean broken up like it was where we had most everything in the conven- tion center and we had boats over at Sea Isle. It would have been boats in one location, accessories in one loca- tion, engines in one location, in-water boats at another location. There simply was no other venue that could accommodate the show. The city of Miami wanted to host the show and they encouraged us to host it at Miami Marine Stadium Park & Basin. In fact, the boat show has been described as lighting in a bottle to get the renovation of Miami Marine Stadium fi nally moving forward. We're going to bring so much attention to Miami Marine Stadium Park that it's going to help move forward the renovation of the stadium, which will return an iconic landmark back to use for the residents of Miami-Dade County. Is it your hope as that happens in the future, that the show will be able to incorporate the stadium into the show? DAMMRICH: We've been so busy at this point getting ready for this show that we haven't had time to spend a whole lot of time thinking about that, but if there was a way to include entertainment or a show at the stadium, that would be terrifi c. It's not something we've spent a lot of time on at this point because it's not going to be avail- able for a few years. EDITOR'S NOTE: Shortly before this issue went to press, Miami-Dade County commissioners voted to issue a key permit for the in-water portion of the show. The commissioners had previously delayed a vote on the issue. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection also issued a state-required environmen- tal permit to the show. The permits cover the show's in-water portions, including docks, water taxi routes and other on-water construction and operations. The third and fi nal permit needed is from the Army Corps of Engineers, but NMMA offi cials said they expected to receive that soon. "Approval of these two permits not only reinforces our long-standing commitment to working closely with all environmental agencies to ensure we meet requirements and continue respecting the environment, but it also allows us to preserve thousands of Miami-Dade jobs and millions of dollars in economic activity for the State of Florida," said Dammrich. "We are proud to continue our promise to be good neighbors at our new home at Miami Marine Stadium Park and Basin for what will be a celebration of the Miami boating lifestyle."

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