Upgraded Air-Conditioning and More Robust Internet Await Attendees and Exhibitors
In conjunction with our second conference and exhibition in Leipzig, we talked to Mr. André Kaldenhoff, Executive Director of the Leipzig Congress Center (CCL), about the refurbishments CCL has undertaken to improve the experience of our attendees and exhibitors in 2014.
What can ISC attendees and exhibitors expect this time around which will be significantly different compared to 2013?
We have analysed the first event and also took a look at the aspects that were criticised by the attendees. For example, last year the ISC was held during an extreme heat wave, which meant that the rooms in the CCL were also very hot. For the upcoming ISC, the rooms will be adequately air-conditioned. To this end, we have rebuilt the entire air-conditioning system in the CCL. New units were installed in 14 rooms, and the capacity of the air-conditioning system was increased significantly.
Furthermore we also improved the media infrastructure.
Speaking of media infrastructure, many attendees and exhibitors experienced the inconvenience of losing their Internet connectivity rather frequently due to network gateway trouble. We know that you have taken some measures to avoid this from repeating. Would you please elaborate on that?
Based on last year’s experience, the Leipziger Messe tendered a complete overhaul of the technical platform for the visitor WLAN. The new solution, which was commissioned at the beginning of 2014, offers much better scalability and can manage a greater number of users simultaneously. We have already observed positive experience with the new system at a couple of large-scale events, and believe that we are well equipped for ISC’14.
Unfortunately the mayor of Berlin announced in late January that the Brandenburg International Airport will remain closed until “sometime in 2015”. Given that, what do you think is the fastest and most trouble-free way to reach Leipzig?
It is true that our planning will be negatively affected by another postponement of the opening of the airport. Unfortunately, we have no control over these events, and recommend that nternational travellers complete their bookings in a timely manner using the Star Alliance Convention Plus Programme offered by ISC (refer to the ISC website). In addition, we also recommend that attendees use the international hubs Vienna, Istanbul, Munich, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Zurich and Paris, as these offer direct flights into Leipzig.
Most of the international hotels are situated downtown. What do you think are the advantages and disadvantages in staying in the city center?
From our experience, we have found that visitors prefer a variety of hotel locations. Downtown hotels offer the advantage that guests can experience the unique flair of Leipzig after spending the day at the convention center. The city will be celebrating its 1000th anniversary next year, and continues to provide a mixture of history and the living present as well as a diversity of culture and food offerings.
Which is the most convenient way to reach the CCL from downtown?
Many visitors reach the CCL by taking a taxi from downtown. If you want to experience the city close up, you can also use the public transit system. Both the city railroad and tram line bring guests from several stops in the inner city to the doors of the CCL.
Can you tell us about some of the international events CCL has hosted since ISC’13?
Every year, the CCL hosts many events with international participants. In 2013, these events included top-class scientific events such as the 5th Congress of European Microbiologists (FEMS) with 2,000 participants and the congress of the European Society on Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism (ESPEN) with 3,000 participants. In addition, every year the CCL also hosts the LINC Leipzig Interventional Course, a convention for vascular specialists with a growing number of attendees. The last convention attracted 4,000 participants from around the world. The World Conference on Regenerative Medicine, which is held every two years, attracted 12,000 participants last year.
Are there any other developments at the conference center you would like to share with our readers?
The CCL has received a number of important awards over the past few years. In 2012, the British trade magazine "Business Destination" honoured the CCL asEurope's top convention and conference centre. It also received the Green Meeting Experts Award for its commitment to sustainability for its innovative mobility concept during the 2011 ICCA Congress.
Sustainability also features prominently in the Green Globe Certificate: Leipziger Messe, which also includes the CCL, has just passed the recertification process for the third time and thus meets approximately 300 social, ecological and economic criteria for sustainable company management. Leipziger Messe was the first German trade fair company to receive the Green Globe seal of approval.