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Columbus officially submits bid for 2016 RNC

 
Columbus officially submits bid for 2016 RNC
Posted Wednesday, February 26th 2014 @ 8am  by WTVN Newsroom

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WTVN) -- The city of Columbus is now in the running for the 2016 Republican National Convention.

Experience Columbus submitted the official entry Wednesday afternoon.

"This is our Super Bowl," said Brian Ross, president and CEO of Experience Columbus.

Requirements for hosting the convention included having a hall that can seat at least 18,000 people. Nationwide Arena will fit that bill.

The city also had to have 40,000 square feet of office space for convention officials as well as up to 350,000 square feet of space for the huge number of reporters and media outlets that will cover the event.

Parking requirements include space for 2,000 vehicles and more than 300 buses. Columbus also has to have 16,000 first-class hotel rooms and 1,000 suites with at least one or two bedrooms.

350 air conditioned buses will be used to shuttle convention-goers between their hotels and the convention sites.

At least 5,000 volunteers will also be called on during the convention to make sure everything goes off without a hitch.

"This is about marketing. This is about image. This is about jobs. This is about tax dollars. This is about economic development," Ross said.

Ross estimates the convention could pump anywhere from $150 million to $200 million into the local economy.

Columbus isn't alone in pitching itself to host the convention. Cincinnati and Cleveland are other Ohio cities that submitted proposals as well. Representatives from all three cities will be in Washington, DC on Monday to make a formal presentation. A finalist list will be created in mid-March, according to Ross.

Columbus is also vying for the Democratic National Convention.

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