In early 1963, many of San Antonio’s business & civic leaders came together to discuss the need to re-energize the local economy. After several discussions the idea came about – “How about doing something like what the city of Seattle the year before with hosting a World’s Fair?”. Some of the advantages included: urban renewal, international promotion for the city, & new sources of revenue. At the time, several of the World’s Fair’s held in North America were held (in advanced planning) to commemorate a host city’s anniversary. For the city of San Antonio, the year 1968 would mark the 250th anniversary of its founding in 1718. As the idea garnered more interest, a organizing committee was formed and funds collected to finance an official feasibility study. The decision was to source the same firm – “ERA Associates” based in Los Angeles to perform the same original study they performed for the city of Seattle, Wa. which lead to the successful hosting of the “Century 21 Exposition”
Could the city of San Antonio, Texas successfully hold a World’s Fair in 1968? – The study came back “YES!!!”.
One of the key take-away points from the study was that although the average cost of living for San Antonio residents was lower than residents in Seattle. The fact that San Antonio contained a far greater number of residents & was (still is today) the gateway to Latin America would allow the proposed event to make a nice profit for the city.