Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Cases for NSSBC Hosting Sites (Part 1)

So there are obviously some factors that come into play when a host is picked for the NSSBC:

1) ASCE/AGC/AISC Student Involvement
It's no secret that an NSSBC needs a high level of commitment and person-power to pull off a successful hosting job. You look at Texas A&M, Clemson, Colorado School of Mines, Wisconsin Madison, Purdue, Florida, CSU Northridge etc. etc. and you see Universities with strong student leadership in the student club ranks.

2) Facilities & Logistics
You have to be able to house everybody under one roof for the competition. It's ideal to have access to a huge arena, but Colorado School of Mines and Purdue managed to pull it off in spaces that were, shall we say, not entirely ideal, but still very functional. Then there's the banquet which has to house several hundred people comfortably. Every college campus has an outdoor and indoor space that can fit all the bridges for Display judging, so that's not that huge of an issue. Furthermore, it's good to have a place that isn't overly busy with traffic...like say New York City. Being able to stay mobile around the host City and get in/out of the loading docks is a big plus. Most college campuses outside of major cities don't have this issue obviously.

3) Location That Offers Some Off the Field Fun
It's pretty well known that NDSU, one of the powers in the NSSBC over the last decade go denied a hosting gig. While some people would enjoy the Fargo/Moorhead area, it's probably safe to say a lot would, uh, not. Clearly, you need to have a little more to offer in the general area. Looking at the past: College Station had Austin nearby, Colorado School of Mines had Denver nearby, Purdue had Indy and Chicago nearby, Florida had all the fun in Orlando nearby, Clemson's right there by Atlanta. The only possible exception would be Salt Lake City...very isolated, so you're banking on the City itself, which wasn't bad...and the 1st floor being solely dedicated to the NSSBC party by the hotel staff was "Winning".

4) Bribes
Yes, I'm kidding.
Portland, OR
Portland State and University of Portland, this means you. Like Salt Lake City, it offers a unique blend of urban environment and functionality...the only thing standing in the Portland Metro Areas' way is where to have the competition. The Viks were having a hard time getting Jerry Glanville's football team enough time and space to practice in the 2000's and now you're looking to bring in about a 150 to 200 cars with easy access to a site downtown. One option could be the Oregon Convention Center, but unlike the Salt Palace, IT IS HELLA BOOKED IN MAY. Portland is a great draw worldwide as a conference/event hosting city because of it's green attitude, scenic beauty and relatively easy going traffic circles. Another high profile option is the Rose Garden...but that's also a popular venue. So there in lies an idea, UOP has the Chiles Center. It's a nicely domed indoor venue with the capacity of 20,000 sq. feet when seats get rolled back. Could work. The only knock on Portland is that it could be raining a bit about 0.06 inches historically on Memorial Day weekend, and the weather is about 60 degrees on average at that time...so, I say move it up to June!...or just allow practice time inside at the Chiles Center or elsewhere around town. Also, there are the Portland Timbers...who will tell you that there's No Pity in the Rose City.

Seattle, WA
University of Washington, UBC or Seattle University. All the classic taste of the Northwest and obviously has hella venues at UW. On average the weather is about the same as Portland, but there is more to do, like Mariner's games and Seattle Sounders games. The cool part about Seattle is that you're basically right there on the Sound and the Pacific. Portland is about an hour or so from a beautiful coastline, whereas Seattle is right up on the inlets. Tons to do in Seattle, so many ways to get lost and see the City. One knock on Seattle is the traffic, it is not very good. However, all the on campus venues for UW are away from downtown on the north side of I-5. They could really swing a nice NSSBC if the commitment were there. One more thing to say about UW is that it is one of the most beautiful campuses you will ever see.

The Entire Northeast Region
MIT, Northeastern, Tufts, NJIT, Rutgers, Drexel, Delaware, Lafayette...the whole of the Boston/NY/East Pennsylvania/Maryland/Delaware area would be full of liquid fun as a NSSBC location. Logistically, however, it could be a nightmare...then again, if MIT can't figure it out nobody can. I'm guessing there are plenty of venues despite the tight spaces, perhaps, an outlying University could host to keep it out of the Cities for the event itself...but seriously...the Northwest and the Northeast haven't hosted ever, and those are two areas that use a shiteload of steel in their infrastructure.


  1. FYI everybody Blogger is having serious login issues...meaning I can't get new posts together or edit old ones. I'm seeing typos and it's irking me, but we'll survive. Regardless, it's cool to be posting again...hope everybody had fun at College Station...HOWDY!...and that your internships or summer plans are gonna be good experiences for you this summer. Go make money!...or make love, I think I'll do the latter.

  2. Tatonka, New York writeup:

  3. Again, for the record...I hate Blogger right now...unpostable...