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SBD Global/November 19, 2013/Events and Attractions

Early Opening Of Venues Shows That Glasgow 2014's Legacy Is 'Already Underway'

The team behind the 2014 Commonwealth Games indicated that the "early opening of Glasgow 2014 venues and high demand for tickets shows that the legacy of the Games is 'already in action,'" according to the SCOTSMAN. Venues such as the "refurbished Tollcross International Swimming Centre, the Sir Chris Hoy velodrome and Emirates Arena in Glasgow’s east end opened to the public more than a year before the Games begin." The Games Partners Progress Report said that demand around ticket sales and the launch of the Queen’s Baton Relay have also "swelled public interest." A £10M ($16M) Scottish Government fund to "promote health and exercise and the launch of a series of cultural events in the build-up to the start of the Games in July next year were also highlighted in the document which is produced by Glasgow 2014 organisers." Glasgow 2014 CEO David Grevemberg said, "The past six months have seen an historic uptake of tickets, great performance of the commercial program and a real vote of confidence from the Commonwealth Games Federation's Co-ordination Commission" (SCOTSMAN, 11/18).

HOTEL PRICES RAISE CONCERNS: The BBC's Chris McLaughlin reported Glasgow hotels have been "urged not to 'fleece' visitors seeking accommodation" at the Games and risk losing the city's "friendly" tag. Of 10 hotels "picked at random," prices during Games time were compared "against prices outside of the 11-day event." The "average price increase on a daily rate for a standard double room during the Games was 410%." Organizers pointed to "Edinburgh and Stirling as alternative bases during their visit." Both cities are "less than an hour's commute from the host city and are expecting to see an overspill." Chris French "from Rugby" said, "Trying to find somewhere to stay has been a very unpleasant surprise. Everywhere I looked, the prices just seemed to have zeros added to them. Some rooms that are usually £100 ($161) per night are now going for £800 ($1,289) -- and you don't even get your breakfast with that." Glasgow City Marketing Bureau CEO Scott Taylor said that "price increases can be justified in part," but conceded that "those pitching prices too high are not helping." Taylor: "It'll turn people away from their property for sure" (BBC, 11/18).

GS4 AWARDED STEWARDING ROLE: REUTERS' Neil Maidment reported British security firm G4S, which was "responsible for a high-profile failure to properly staff the 2012 London Olympics," is to "help deliver stewarding at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games next year." GS4 is "one of 19 firms invited to work at the event." Games organizers said that G4S is one of a "group of companies enlisted to help provide safety stewarding." A separate group, "not including G4S, will provide venue security services, such as protection, patrols and surveillance" (REUTERS, 11/18).
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