Saturday, September 11, 2010

World Expo 2020 (The World's Fair) in Silicon Valley?

There was a lot of buzz last week when the Governator announced Silicon Valley's candidacy for the 2020 World Expo at the current 2010 Expo in Shanghai. There is entirely different from the "Bay Area" Expo that is also in the running for 2020 and would be based out of San Francisco (which has already hosted the Expo twice). Arnold's pitch was squarely focused around the world's leader in innovation and technology, Silicon Valley/San Jose.

Of course I'm biased, but I couldn't think of a more appropriate venue for 2020. It's a very "futurish" sounding year. As children we all probably imagined having robots clean up after us and driving around in flying cars by then. Who knows, that still may be the case... but whatever technology the future brings, there is a great chance it'll be coming from here. As an added bonus, we have one of the most statistically diverse ethnic populations on the planet for any large city (even more than SF), an extremely safe and clean city, and relatively good infrastructure.

A Wold Expo would no doubt be a huge boon to the area. I've only had a chance to attend one of them, Expo 98 in Lisbon, Portugal. I remember seeing billions of dollars worth of international pavilions, world-class museums, one of the best aquariums in the world, and incredible public art. That also happened to be one of the first Expos where they didn't tear most of it down afterward, they were able to re-purpose all of that development into one of the nicest parts of Lisbon today. The museums and public art are still there, along with new restaurants, hundreds of shops, and dense housing for 100,000+ people.

A great local example of how a World Expo can transform a city is Seattle in 1962. The most iconic symbol representing Seattle, The Space Needle, was built specifically for the World' Fair. Accompanying it was a monorail, what is now the Pacific Science Center, the current Seattle Center, and even the Experience Music Project was designed to fit in with the Expo atmosphere.

So let's get involved and do everything possible to bring Expo 2020 to Silicon Valley!


  1. That would be really exciting to have the Expo come to SJ!

  2. This would awesome. What are some potential sites for the buildings and sites?

    (Potenial new post....)

  3. Looks like Moffett Field would be the main site.