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SF Picks the America’s Cup

While this may not end up being the main staging area, the prospects of the Cup coming to San Francisco have never looked better.

© Skidmore Owings Merill LLP

Yesterday, Mayor Gavin Newsom introduced legislation supported by a majority of the Board of Supervisors to bring the 34th America’s Cup to San Francisco Bay. The legislation is a binding-agreement version of a handshake deal between the City and BMW Oracle Racing that will still have to be voted on, but given the support already shown by the Supes so far — six of them are co-sponsoring the item — this is a very encouraging step. The agreement has morphed somewhat from the original term sheet that so many Bay Area sailors turned out to City Hall to support. There are escape clauses which may end up seeing the venue moved from Piers 30/32 and 50 farther up the waterfront to an area between Piers 19-29, as the Giants — emboldened by a once-in-56 years World Series win — are rumored to object to using the space so close to AT&T Park.

The timing of the vote — which has not been announced — will be critical as BMW Oracle Racing have said that they want to announce the venue by the end of the year, and we’re pretty deep into 2010. But one thing is for sure: the City and the team have put a lot of effort into this, and the prospects for the Cup coming to the Bay have never looked better.

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If it wasn’t so darn funny, we might feel sorry for the 4,466 people stranded aboard the engineless 952-ft cruise ship Carnival Splendor.