The Experience Bryan/College Station travel and tourism agency (EBCS) is being disbanded.
That’s after the College Station city council voted to pull out of the partnership with the city of Bryan and Brazos County and form its own tourism office.
The unanimous vote followed no comments from any council members.
College Station’s withdrawal from EBCS is effective August 1.
EBCS board chairman, Spencer Clements of the Stella Hotel and Lake Walk, says they have known of College Station’s interest for its own office for some time.
College Station’s action means the city of Bryan and Brazos County will conduct their own efforts to recruit events and hotel guests.
College Station’s economic development director, Natalie Ruiz, tells WTAW News “This will not be a quick or painless effort but integrating tourism into our larger Economic Development Strategy is the future of Aggieland!”
Ruiz also tells WTAW News “We are executing a plan to incorporate College Station’s top industry — tourism and hospitality — into our overall economic development, community enhancement and local recovery strategies.”
“Marketing, sales and client services will transition away from the Experience Bryan College Station third-party arrangement and directly into the city’s organization.”
“Staff from both cities are working together with EBCS staff on the separation process while ensuring tourism functions continue.”
Ruiz shared with WTAW News, the following bullet points about College Station’s new tourism office and dissolving EBCS:
• Hospitality is College Station’s top industry and this move will help align our overall strategic goals for the community.
• We will continue to work with our many community partners to champion the Brazos Valley as a destination.
• We expect the city’s new tourism operation to have deeper talent, energy and focus for faster recovery within our city’s hospitality and tourism industry.
• Staffs from both cities and EBCS will collaborate to ensure the continuity of marketing and tourism efforts (including grants and incentives) through this transition.
• While aggressive, this timeline is critical to the success of this strategic move and fully integrating tourism into our larger economic development efforts.
• Effective August 1st, CS’s participation in EBCS will officially end. Both cities will work with the EBCS Board and Staff to separate assets, address liabilities and dissolve the corporation.
• After August 1st we will be working two efforts simultaneously: (1) Continuing current tourism efforts through sales, servicing and marketing; and, (2) Establishing a College Station framework moving forward.
Click below for comments from Spencer Clements, visiting with WTAW’s Bill Oliver:
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