U.S. Special Operations Command will host a capabilities demonstration on Wednesday, May 18, 2022 from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. at the Tampa Convention Center. A rehearsal took place earlier this afternoon.
The simulation is part of the Special Operations Forces Industry Conference and includes more than 175 SOCOM and international service members from 11 nations. The demonstration includes simulated explosions, simulated gunfire and low-flying aircraft. Helicopters, boats, all-terrain vehicles, scuba divers and ground forces will be used to “rescue” a city official from “hostile” forces.
John Bennett, who serves as Chief of Staff to Mayor Jane Castor, will present a public proclamation prior to the event on Wednesday, with military event organizers and participants available for interviews before and after the event.
Traffic around the Tampa Convention Center will be interrupted on both days from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Spectators may view the demonstration from the roads around the Tampa Convention Center.
South Franklin Street will be blocked at the intersection of Water Street from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on both May 17 and May 18.
The blockage extends to South Harbour Island Boulevard to the Westin Hotel parking garage. Hotel or local restaurant guests can exit the parking garage south on South Harbour Island Boulevard.
The four water entrances to the Seddon Channel will also be blocked from noon to 2:30 p.m. both days, allowing only demonstration participants, including fast boats and scuba divers.
Tampa Convention Center parking will be extremely limited. For parking, members of the media may contact the SOCOM Public Affairs Office.