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by NYC Editor , 09/15/2009

 
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 15, 2009
No. 407
www.nyc.gov

MAYOR BLOOMBERG AND LONDON MAYOR JOHNSON SIGN TOURISM AGREEMENT TO BOOST TRAVEL BETWEEN NEW YORK CITY AND LONDON

Two-Year Agreement Includes Advertising Exchange, Sharing of Best Practices and Assistance on Publicity Events

Promoting Targeted Sectors Like Tourism to Diversify New York City’s Economy is Part of the Bloomberg Administration’s Five Borough Economic Opportunity Plan

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and London Mayor Boris Johnson today announced a two-year tourism agreement between New York City and London to boost travel between the two cities. The cities will provide each other with outdoor media advertising space, and NYC & Company and Visit London – their respective tourism arms – will share best practices as a way to maximize travel between the two destinations and will assist each other with at least one publicity event in each city. The Mayors made the announcement during an international conference sponsored by the Manhattan Institute and Regional Plan Association at Columbia University where they met to discuss their financial sectors, the diversification of their economies, building and maintaining their capital plants and expanding housing affordability. NYC & Company CEO George Fertitta, Visit London CEO Sally Chatterjee and Columbia University President Lee Bollinger joined the Mayors for the announcement.

“Now more than ever – as we work to limit the effects of the ongoing global financial downturn – it is important to find new ways to grow a diverse array of economic sectors, and tourism is among the most important for New York City,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “New York City and London – both significant sources of overseas travel for each market – can learn a great deal from one other and we will work together to highlight each other’s strengths and remain leading global cities.”

“London and New York City share many similarities, including a strong sense of optimism and determination, along with a great appreciation for diversity and innovation,” said Mayor Johnson. “Our common cultural ties, not least absolute dedication to providing world-class services and experiences for both residents and visitors, make the two cities exceptionally well poised to combine knowledge as well as resources to impact the economies and future of the cities.”

“Tourism will undoubtedly be one of the industries that helps aid our local economy through the recovery from the recession, and we are working harder than ever to promote it,” said George Fertitta. “Through this agreement between NYC & Company and Visit London we are declaring not only a commitment to driving travel between London and NYC but also a vow of the continued friendship between the two cities.”

“As well as being large sources of overseas travel for each market, New York City and London are also each other’s biggest supporters,” said Visit London CEO Sally Chatterjee. “We look forward to working with NYC & Company and see both our organizations continuing to strive for best practice in our role as world-leading destinations. This is an exciting first step in what we expect to be a very fruitful partnership.”

“I congratulate Mayor Bloomberg and Mayor Johnson for taking this important step to strengthen the ties between our cities, and we are proud they chose to make the announcement here at Columbia,” said Columbia University President Lee Bollinger. “As global capitals of business and finance, culture and ideas, New York and London are not only engines of a dynamic economy, they are also leaders in the search for solutions to many of the world’s most pressing problems. Great research universities are essential to the life of both these great cities. We look forward to greater collaborations as we strive to provide the intellectual capital that drives innovation in every field of human endeavor across the globe.”

Under the two year tourism agreement New York City will exchange 71 bus shelters with London that will run in New York City for 4 weeks per year. In return, London will exchange 250 posters for four weeks on the London Underground system twice per year. The yearly value of each city’s media is $178,500. The agreement will be a 2 year deal – $357,000 to London and $357,000 back to NYC from London. Also as part of the agreement, NYC & Company and Visit London have agreed to share best practices in their endeavors to boost tourism, and to assist each other with at least one publicity event in their respective cities.

Last year New York City welcomed a record 1,328,000 visitors from the UK, surpassing the record 1,237,000 visitors in 2007, making it the City’s number one source of international visitors. New York City is the number one destination for UK travelers to the US. Similarly, Americans made almost 2 million visits to London last year, and America remains London’s number one market for international visitors.

The Bloomberg Administration’s Five Borough Economic Opportunity Plan is a comprehensive strategy to bring New York City through the current economic downturn as fast as possible. It focuses on three major areas: creating jobs for New Yorkers today, implementing a long-term vision for growing the city’s economy, and building affordable, attractive neighborhoods in every borough. Taken together, the initiatives that the City has launched to achieve these goals will generate thousands of jobs and put New York City on a path to economic recovery and growth. To learn more about the plan, visit nyc.gov.

Recent Five Borough Economic Opportunity Plan announcements to diversify the economy include:
• Broadway had its biggest season ever, selling 12 million tickets generating $943 million.
• More than 800 retailers throughout the five boroughs participated in Fashion’s Night Out.
• Resources for workforce training to New Yorkers for jobs in a green economy.
• ImClone will locate its research headquarters at the City’s new bioscience complex.
• A plan to create 11,000 permanent industrial jobs on Brooklyn’s working waterfront.
• Eight initiatives to strengthen the media industry in New York City.
• New initiatives to help support Hispanic-owned small businesses.
• The opening of China Construction Bank’s New York City office.
• New international cruise activity, growing New York City’s 13,000-job cruise industry.
• Steps to help New York City’s bioscience companies compete for Federal funding.
• Legislation that will green buildings and create 19,000 construction jobs.
• Green projects at the Brooklyn Navy Yard are creating more than 1,700 permanent jobs.
• Comprehensive initiatives to support the nonprofit sector and its 490,000 jobs.
• New programs to provide training and resources for City’s future entrepreneurs.
• 11 new initiatives to support the financial services sector and promote entrepreneurship.
Other Five Borough Economic Opportunity Plan announcements include:
• The City financed 12,500 low- and middle-income affordable housing units in the last year.
• The start of construction of the $148 million East River Waterfront Esplanade.
• The first housing projects to start using TCAP stimulus funds, creating 2,800 jobs.
• The start of construction of an affordable housing complex in the South Bronx.
• Steps to prevent a speculative purchase of Ocelot Capital Group sites in the South Bronx.
• Plans for the first 120 units of the Seaview Senior housing project in Staten Island.
• SecondMarket, Inc. will create 367 new jobs in Lower Manhattan through JCRP.
• $1 million to create a shared commercial kitchen at La Marqueta in East Harlem.
• The start of construction of a 600-unit mixed-income complex in the Bronx.
• The start of construction of major improvements to Queens Plaza and Jackson Avenue.
• $100 million for 14 infrastructure projects across Queens that will create 400 new jobs.
• The adoption of the City’s plan for Coney Island that will create more than 30,000 jobs.
• $350,000 in NYC Business Solutions Training Funds awarded to small businesses.
• Enhancements to the City’s Minority- and Women-Owned Business Enterprise Program.
• The opening of a 125-unit mixed income housing development in the Central Harlem.
• A record 10,500 job placements through the first half of 2009.
• A plan to convert unoccupied apartments and stalled sites into affordable housing.
• The opening of New Mount Hope Community Center in the Bronx.
• The purchase of the Hunter’s Point South site to create a new, affordable neighborhood.
• A public campaign to help more New Yorkers get free foreclosure prevention services.
• The start of services of the Park Slope 5th Avenue Business Improvement District.
• A stimulus-funded bond program to spur commercial and industrial projects citywide.
• The City will use nearly $32 million to train 10,000 New Yorkers for jobs.
• New space for 20 small businesses in Bushwick, creating more than 80 industrial jobs.
• The citywide “Fashion’s Night Out” event to support retailers in all five boroughs.
• The start to construction of the International Gem Tower, which will house 3,000 jobs.
• City’s Workforce1 Centers in Harlem and Jamaica received awards for innovation.
• Food Retail Expansion to Support Health (FRESH) program to encourage grocery stores.
• City-supported loans unavailable from banks to help small businesses stay in operation.
• Three new Financial Empowerment Centers offering free, one-on-one financial coaching.
• Stimulus funding to help the City provide summer jobs for 51,000 young New Yorkers.
• The opening of New Hope Walton Project, housing for low-income residents in Harlem.
• New affordable housing at Gateway Building, a long-vacant structure in the South Bronx.
• The Harlem Business Assistance Fund to help businesses relocate to the 125th Street area.
• The expansion of NYC Business Express to help businesses obtain permits and licenses.
• The “Nine in ’09” campaign to promote economic activity in diverse neighborhoods.
• A Center for Economic Opportunity program put 4,000 low-income New Yorkers in jobs.
• Stimulus-funded community development projects that will strengthen neighborhoods.
• Stimulus-funded Housing Authority projects that will create jobs for 3,255 New Yorkers.
• The start of construction of 103 units of affordable housing in Brownsville.
• The opening of Home Depot in the South Bronx creating 200 new permanent jobs.
• The latest round of training funds to help small businesses train their employees.
• The placement of 50 laid-off New Yorkers into positions at entrepreneurial companies.
• New York City achieved a record 5,000 job placements through the first quarter of 2009.
• Help for a beer distributor to create 55 permanent and 30 construction jobs in the Bronx.
• Comprehensive initiatives to support the nonprofit sector and its 490,000 jobs.
• Federal stimulus transportation projects that will create or preserve 32,000 jobs.
• Steps the City is taking to help small businesses adapt to conditions and avoid layoffs.
• A plan to create and retain 400,000 jobs over the next six years.

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Contact: Stu Loeser/Andrew Brent (Mayor Bloomberg) (212) 788-2958
Rachelle Laurence (Mayor Johnson) + 44 20 7983 4599
Kimberly Spell/Emma Thomas (NYC & Company) (212) 484-1270
Ken Kelling/ Jacqueline French (Visit London) + 44 79 4121 8915