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Information not specific to venues is at DebConf7/EdinburghBidDocument.


[edit] Conference Facilities

(Debian developers at the UKUUG conference in Edinburgh in 2003)

We have been working to a projection of 300-400 attendees.

All the venues we have been considering are in the city centre, a change from the last few DebConfs which have used venues in the suburbs or in a smaller town.

We currently have a shortlist of three venues: Edinburgh College of Art and Teviot south of the High St and The Royal College of Physicians north of the High St. The first two of these venues can be seen, along with the currently-favoured sleeping location, in this [[Image:] view].

[edit] Edinburgh College of Art

ECA's Lauriston Place campus is conveniently situated close to the Grassmarket and High St. We would use the main lecture theatre (seats 218), the Hunter Room (seats 78), and other rooms as required - they have many studio spaces which would be appropriate as hacklabs.

Food would be provided in the ECA's canteen.

Availability: End of July, after graduations. Fringe venue.

Hire costs: £500 (€725) per day for the main theatre; Hunter room £350 (€509) per day; other rooms seating 60 about £150 (€218) per day.

Accessibility: The ECA main building with the large lecture theatre has flat, wide corridors and a lift. The canteen and smaller lecture theatre are on an adjacent side of the courtyard, in the Hunter building, and can be reached by a ramp from the courtyard or via a lift inside the building. "While the main campus is wheelchair accessible, with automatic doors, lifts and toilets all

suitable for wheelchair users, access to certain studios and departments is limited.

The main campus is equipped with a Deaf Alerter fire-alarm system and the principal lecture

theatres are fitted with induction loops."

(ECA main building / small lecture theatre / large lecture theatre from front / large lecture theatre from back / Sculpture Court / corridor in main building / stairs in main building / part of canteen / view from canteen)

More/bigger photos at

[edit] Teviot

Teviot Row House is the oldest purpose-built student union building in the world (built in 1889), but has recently been renovated to provide wheelchair access. It is near George Square and the Meadows, five minutes walk from the High Street.

We would use the Debating Hall for talks (seats 250), and other large rooms as required.

Teviot contains several catering outlets which could be used to serve food to DebConf attendees.

Availability: First two weeks of July, then booked. Fringe venue.

Hire costs: £200 (€290) per day for the debating chamber. £45-50 (€65-���73) per day for other rooms in the building.

Accessibility: The main entrance is stepped; wheelchair users use a pass to open an accessible entrance on the corner. An internal lift gives access to the principal floors.

(Wheelchair users' entrance to building) (Debating hall)

Bigger photos at

[edit] Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh

The older part of the RCPE building dates back to the 1770s, and was designed by Robert

Adam. The building also contains modern conference facilities, including a large lecture

theatre seating 300 people. We would expect to use the large lecture theatre and the Great

Hall (seats 180) for concurrent talks. The New Library is also available (seats 80). We

would also have the use of five hacklabs, which each seats between 25 and 50 people.

Hire costs: approximately £20 000 (€29 000) for all rooms for the week.

Accessibility: "As a listed building, the College has restricted disabled access. Delegates

requiring assistance are asked to use the rear entrance where a wheelchair lift is

provided. This entrance gives access to the Conference Centre, Great Hall, New

Library and Cullen Suite. Meeting Rooms 1 to 5 and the Seminar Room are not

accessible by wheelchair."

The RCPE is located on Queen St in the New Town in central Edinburgh. There is a small garden within the

venue, and large public gardens within 5 minutes' walk.

(Great Hall / New Library / main conference hall / main conference hall from back / breakout area beside main hall / meeting room (can be split in two) / another meeting room)

Bigger photos at

  • How much does it cost to rent these facilities ?

See details above.

  • How far away are the locations from each other? (auditoriums, hacklabs, restaurant, sleeping quarters, info desk)

See the map with tags

  • What kind of places are available suitable for hacklabs, workshops, BoFs and talks?
  • How many people fit in each of them?

See details above.

  • How flexible can that be handled?
  • Can smaller auditoriums be merged into a bigger one?

The venues don't have mergeable rooms, but they have a wide range of rooms of different sizes.

If there is a public Debian Day, it might make sense to book a larger lecture theatre for that - many are available, but we have been trying to keep down the venue prices above.

  • Are tables/chairs fixed, or can we arrange them to fit more people/give more room to the people that we need?

We can rearrange them.

  • Is the venue ready for handicapped people? Note: Keep in mind that it's not only motion-handicapped - Is the area safe for people with any kind of handicap? (There are sight and hearing-impaired people, too.) Bonus: What people is it not good for?

See accessibility information above.

  • Access to all areas with ramps and/or elevators? (Note: carrying somebody over some steps is not usually an acceptable option.)

See accessibility information above. There are some rooms within the buildings that are not wheelchair accessible, but we would not book these as spaces for DebConf.

  • Are blueprints with exact distances available to us (to be kept confidential on request)?

We already have a plan of the ECA buildings, we're haven't had a response about this for the other venues.

  • What kind of audio equipment is already present at the auditoriums?
    • Wireless or stationary mics?
    • clip-on kind of mics or cary in your hand mics?
    • How many of them?

This depends what we negotiate with the venue; it may be cheaper to use our own audiovisual equipment, since we have contacts within the industry.

  • Will the hacklabs be allowed to stay open 24x7? What time schedule do they offer?
  • What kind of security will be there?
  • Are there any limitations regarding the consumptions of food / alcohol? Where do what limitations apply?
  • How far is it to the nearest convenience stores / all-night restaurants?

[edit] Food

FIXME: get other venues' costs from kev!

  • How much are the meals per person per day?

Costs at Teviot:

    • Table service (what they normally provide): £7 per person for a hot meal.
    • Canteen: standard prices as during university term: depends how much we provide, but estimated maximum £4.50.

Costs at ECA:

Due on 2006-07-03.

Cheapest external catering: the mosque kitchen can provide meals at £2 to £2.50 per person.

    • Is the eating place near the talks place / the hacklabs?

Yes, close by within the same building.

  • What kind of food would be served?

    • In what fashion? (service to the table, limited buffet, open buffet, etc.)

In Teviot and the ECA we could use their canteen facilities (like in Helsinki); in the RCPE conferences usually have table service using external caterers.

    • Would food for vegetarians / vegan / lactose-alergic / religious (of any denomination) people be available?
    • How much meals do we need to order to get those kind of "special" meals?
    • Will it cost extra to get those special meals?

Vegetarian and vegan food is easy; other requirements would need to be discussed with the caterers ahead of time to check if they are possible to meet/what the costs will be.

  • In a two week period, how many more or less equal meals can we expect?

We have been looking at providing lunch and dinner each day, as in Oaxtepec.

[edit] Network connectivity

  • Is the area already wired with regular network infrastructure? (much preferrably: 100Mbps or 1Gbps switched)

ECA: partially, but not to all the rooms we'd want to use.

Teviot: yes, there is networking between the rooms we'd want use, which we should be able to use.

RCPE: partially, but not to all the rooms we'd want to use.

  • How much does it cost and how difficult is it to get a big internet connection? (10/20 Mbits at least)

Our 'baseline' networking option is to use a couple of 8 Mb ADSL lines provided by one of our sponsor ISPs.

In Teviot and (with higher probability) the ECA we might be able to use their existing fast uplinks to the UK academic network.

FIXME: quote costs

Edinburgh is a major hub of the UK ISP peering network. There is excellent broadband access via cable, ADSL and ISDN throughout the city. We have already had offers of sponsored connections from Black Cat Networks, UKFSN, and Web Tapestry.

  • How much work does it imply to cover the area with wireless links?

  • If we use someone else's infrastructure, how easy / flexible can that be handled, regarding routing / firewall / ip-range / public access / other stuff?

    • Do we have restrictions on allowed ports?-

    • Are we traffic-shaped? Or can we set a traffic shaper if we need so?

  • Would it be possible to set up the network before Debcamp? (a day or two, earlier would be nicer, in order to handle problems gracefully. Additional weeks for wireless.)

[edit] Special rooms

FIXME: fill in this section!

Both for server and video rooms:

  • General conditions for the rooms
    • Size
    • Have they/do they need air conditioning?
    • ~+What electrical load can they handle?+~

[edit] Accomodation

The sponsored accommodation will be near the conference venue in the city centre. We are negotating with a number of choices. Our lowest-cost offer so far was £10 per person per night from Ocean Hostel in Leith; we expect another round of negotiations would reduce the prices listed below.

Here are some examples of what we've been offered so far, prioritising hostels closer to the likely venues:

[edit] Accommodation 1

37-39 Cowgate

Capacity: 180 beds

Double rooms available.

Costs: 10/12 bed dorm £11.50 each; 6-8 bed £12 each; smaller rooms £13.50 for midweek and £15 at weekends. Minimum age of 18.

[edit] Accommodation 2

96 Cowgate

Capacity: 170 beds.

Double rooms available.

Costs: £11 in 6 bed room, £12 in 4 bed room. Will calculate rate for group booking at time.

[edit] Accommodation 3

9-13 Market St

Capacity: 150-200

Costs: £16 for 14+ dormitories, more for smaller rooms: £19 at weekend.

[edit] Accommodation 4

50 Blackfriars St

Double rooms available. Some rooms wheelchair-accessible.

Costs: 12 bed dormitory £19 per person per night, 8 bed £22, 6 bed £23, 4 bed £25.

  • How much does it cost per person per night?

See above.

  • Is the place where people are going to sleep near the conference facilities?

Five minutes' walk.

  • Is it able to handle a varying number from 20 to 400 of people?

Yes; we expect to use more than one nearby hostel if large numbers of sponsored rooms are required.

  • Is it able to handle non-native speaking people? (i.e. do the people at the sleeping facilities speak English?)

All staff speak English; some also speak other languages.

  • Will there be a need of a "Debconf" info-desk, or would the local (hotel or such) people be able to handle that themselves? (See DebConf InfoDesk for details on duties)

The accommodation can deal with questions about the rooms, and standard 'tourist' advice. The conference venue might be able to deal with new arrivals if we ask them to, but at least at the start of the conference it probably makes sense to have someone from Debian present.

All the venues have space at the front entrance where we could arrange an InfoDesk to deal with new arrivals.

  • Will it be possible for couples to stay in their own rooms?

Almost all the hostels we have talked to have some double/twin rooms.

  • How many room keys would be available?
  • Are there other hotels around?

Yes, there are also many hotels nearby for those who want to find their own accommodation independently, from other hostels to boutique luxury hotels.

  • Are there rooms ready for handicapped people? How many?

Some of the hostels have wheelchair-accessible rooms, e.g. Accommodation 4 above has 3 rooms designed for wheelchair users.

Information not specific to venues is at DebConf7/Edinburgh.

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