By: Stephanie Esquivel | From: News4SA

Visit San Antonio said the organization is working to bring more conventions, conferences and large events to San Antonio. The organization said the increased foot traffic in the city wouldn’t just benefit the hospitality industry, but everyone will reap the benefits from the economic boost.

“They represent $6 billion of booked business and meetings and conventions at an annual basis and these are exactly the conventions that we need to bring to San Antonio,” said Marc Anderson, President and CEO of Visit San Antonio.

Anderson said more than 10,000 event planners registered for the CVENT CONNECT happening in San Antonio this week. 4,000 of them are attending in person at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center.

Robin Clark with CVENT CONNECT says the event aims to connect and inspire professionals who specialize in planning and organizing large events such as trade shows, conferences and conventions.

“For instance, coming to San Antonio, we are so thrilled to be bringing our attendees here to see all the vibrancy of the city and to see how they can implement their event programs right here in San Antonio, Texas,” said Clark.

Businesses downtown, businesses around the Pearl, and businesses on the St. Mary’s Strip all told us they would like to have more visitors in San Antonio for conventions.

“They’ll go down to the river, they’ll try out some of the restaurants down there but then they go start looking for local flavor,” said Malcolm Hartman Jr., one of the co-owners at Tycoon Flats on the St. Mary’s Strip.

Hartman said a good amount of the restaurant’s foot traffic comes from visitors who are in town to attend large events.

“So many businesses in San Antonio depend on the tourism and while we still have a lot of people coming to visit San Antonio as individuals and families, we’re missing out on what so much of downtown has been built for, which is conventions,” said Hartman.

Anderson said the benefits from the increased foot traffic to the city will be felt by everyone.

“That tax revenue doesn’t just affect the convention center and our restaurants and our hotels. It affects streets and sanitation, our police department, our fire department, our public schools. Tourism keeps San Antonio working,” said Anderson.