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Experiencing Events Animating City Spaces Through Fan Zones

Presentation delivered by David McGillivray at National Outdoor Events Association (NOEA) Convention, Derby, in February 2010

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Experiencing Events Animating City Spaces Through Fan Zones

  1. 1. Experiencing Events: Animating city spaces through Fan Zones Dr David McGillivray, Glasgow Caledonian University & Stewart Arthur, in absentia!
  2. 2. Workshop coverage <ul><li>Fan spaces: The context </li></ul><ul><li>Fan spaces as media/tourism events </li></ul><ul><li>Germany ‘06 – Key themes </li></ul><ul><li>Glasgow 2007 – Key themes </li></ul><ul><li>Glasgow 2007 - Behind the scenes </li></ul><ul><li>Future challenges </li></ul><ul><li>Discussion, Q & A </li></ul>
  3. 3. Fan Spaces: The context <ul><li>2004 European Championships in Portugal first ‘pilot’ of Fan Park concept/Fan Embassies </li></ul><ul><li>2006 FIFA World Cup attracted 13 million visitors across 10 Fan Parks from Berlin to Munich </li></ul><ul><li>2008 UEFA European Championships in Austria/Switzerland hosted Fan Parks in each city </li></ul><ul><li>UEFA’s signature European soccer tournaments also on board </li></ul><ul><li>Inception of Champions League fan zones in Glasgow 2002 </li></ul><ul><li>UEFA Cup Final (2007), Glasgow, Scotland – ‘fan zones’ hosted in city centre </li></ul><ul><li>Now a central institutionalised contractual obligation with hosting sporting ‘mega’, ‘hallmark’ and ‘special’ events’ (HCA) </li></ul><ul><li>But – they bring with them their own ‘challenges’ in terms of event safety, branding, policy and PR </li></ul>
  4. 4. Fan spaces as media/tourism events <ul><li>These events contain the following characteristics: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They’re not spontaneous (despite wanting to look like this) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They are planned so as to be reported or disseminated easily ( media-friendly, part of destination branding strategy ) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They require ‘local’ participation but are essentially for ‘global consumption – i.e. the focus of the lens is on securing ‘dramatic’ moments and iconic imagery: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The cameras were specifically selecting “action shots”, which showed a noisy, waving audience (Boorstin, 1961: 260) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>e.g. MTV Awards, Edinburgh </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They help to ‘animate’ inanimate urban spaces </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They are, increasingly, ‘commercial’ in their outcomes (e.g. brand value for ‘event sponsors’) </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Germany ‘06 Fan Parks: ‘Official’ spaces
  6. 6. Germany ‘06: Key themes <ul><li>Fan Parks at each of 10 host cities </li></ul><ul><li>Deliberate and intentional strategy to ‘welcome’ the world to Germany </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Overcoming national stereotypes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Symbolise their acceptance in the international community” (Allison & Monnington, 2002: 107) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Typically held outside of city centre business districts – in municipal spaces (e.g. Olympic Park, Munich) </li></ul><ul><li>Designed to manage ticketless ‘fans’ in a positive manner </li></ul><ul><li>Spaces designed to encourage i) a festival atmosphere and ii) consumption, guided by corporate sponsors and communicated ‘virally’ to the watching world </li></ul><ul><li>Extremely successful – the template for subsequent sporting events (e.g. 2008 European Championships, Beijing Olympics) </li></ul>
  7. 7. Glasgow 2007 UEFA Cup Final: Creating Carnival
  8. 8. Glasgow 2007: Glasgow Scotland with Style
  9. 9. Glasgow 2007: Key themes <ul><li>City Marketing Bureau (DMO) in lead role to reinforce brand identity – Glasgow: Scotland with Style </li></ul><ul><li>Cosying up to valuable sporting brands (UEFA) and sponsors (Carlsberg) to lever own brand aspirations </li></ul><ul><li>Locating ‘Fan Zones’ in city centre civic space (George Square) to exploit business potential and animate the city streets: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Colour, vibrancy, edgy – and valuable destination imagery guaranteed </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Fan Zones ‘managed spaces’ with control and containment a priority </li></ul><ul><li>But , securing city benefits within the strictures of Host Contract Agreements is possible: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Charles Rennie Macintosh brand; Glasgow: Scotland with Style logo; increased city centre revenue; return tourism visits </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Event owners (e.g. UEFA) policy priorities to include fan events as ancillary events become important supplementary brand vehicle </li></ul>
  10. 10. Glasgow 2007: Behind the scenes <ul><li>Security: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Major intelligence operation to anticipate potential public order problems </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Communications and intelligence gathering began in earnest between the police, UEFA Security, SFA Security and the security representatives from each team from Qtr Final onwards: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>3 levels of fan risk assessment (3= “will fight”; 2=“might fight”; 1= “won’t fight”) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Scenario planning affected ‘approach’ to fan zones </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Contingency plan to segregate (within city centre) and/or locate fan parks in separate spaces (e.g. City parks) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Legislative requirements: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Special legislation to overcome: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>ban on drinking in public places (alcohol licence for two city centre fan zones) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>street traders (licenses suspended for the day if products conflicted with HCA) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>road closures (fan zones became pedestrian areas for day) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>use of designated bus lanes (relaxation of bus lanes to enable ease of transit to stadium) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Major PR campaign to raise awareness of Smoking Ban in public places (welcome leaflet key communications tool) </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Glasgow 2007: Behind the scenes (2) <ul><li>Local population </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Disruption to business operations and residents in surrounding area </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Establishment of business and residents liaison group </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Overall philosophy focused on ‘return’ to businesses in surrounding area </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Programme: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Focused on visiting fans (not residents) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Previous experience (2002 Champions League Final) was of residents taking advantage of Drinking law relaxation - created public order problems </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>2007 strategy - directing business to local bars, restaurants as opposed to singular beneficiary (albeit sponsors had exclusivity within zones) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Avoided big screens as a focal point (potential capacity/crowd safety issues) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Promoted free flow on fans between zones - the ideal outcome for all stakeholders </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Fan Spaces – future challenges <ul><li>Public order/public safety concerns (e.g. Manchester 08 and Vancouver 2010 ) </li></ul><ul><li>Cultural differences – Beijing Live Sites, South Africa 2010, Rio 2014 </li></ul><ul><li>Demand for access to spaces free of corporate sponsors: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Cape Town SA2010 has three level of Fan Park: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>1. The official FIFA fan park at the Grand Parade and the fan mile </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>2. City fan parks in 3 main locations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>3. Four smaller community viewing sites around the city </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Instantaneous communication landscape makes managing message more difficult, especially if authorities are unfamiliar with social media protocols (e.g. Twitter Olympics) </li></ul><ul><li>If you provide it they will come…. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Discussion topics <ul><li>As we approach the 2012 Olympic Games in London, what role will Live Sites play in ensuring a celebratory, animated ‘nation’ (as opposed to city) is created? </li></ul><ul><li>To what extent has the Manchester 2008 UEFA Cup Final experience led to a re-think in the way Fan Zones are managed (or is this just a ‘soccer’ issue)? </li></ul><ul><li>Does the UK regulatory environment work against the promotion of ‘spontaneous’ celebratory activities and is this an impediment to those responsible for promoting destinations? </li></ul><ul><li>In designing fan spaces like those discussed previously, which stakeholder group exerts the greatest power and influence over their location, form and management - and, are there tensions that impact on those of you with extensive experience of outdoor events? </li></ul>