Interspeech 2006

Accomodations & Venue
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Conference Venue

Click here for arrival information.

Click here for general information.

Click here for interactive map.


The conference venue will be the The Westin Convention Center Pittsburgh (external link).
This is the hotel next to the Pittsburgh Convention Center.
We have negotiated a conference rate of $139 per night for 1-4 guests per room.
To make room reservations, click here.

Note: The room block at the Westin is now full for the night of Friday September 15, and rooms are generally scarce in Pittsburgh that evening because of a competing sports event. Many rooms are still available at the Westin for all other nights. The organizing committee is recommending the following options for Friday the 16th:

  1. We have arranged a additional block of rooms at the Courtyard by Marriot at $159. It is best to call them on +1-412-434-5551 (or 1-800-321-2211) quoting the name as "International Conference on Spoken Language Processing"
  2. The Renaissance Pittsburgh Hotel, a nice hotel not too far from the conference hotel, the Westin; the best rate currently shown is $149
  3. The Hyatt Regency Pittsburgh Airport, at the airport (as the name implies); the best rate currently shown is $109
The airport hotel is a good option for people arriving Friday night as it is located on the airport grounds and any of the shuttle/taxi services (including the city bus) can be used to go directly to either downtown (for SAPA or Blizzard) or Oakland (for the YRR workshop) on Saturday morning.

There is no formal block reserved at these hotels, although both currently show at least 20 rooms availability. The rates at the Renaissance do go up on the 16th, so attendees are encouraged to use this option for only one night and then switch to the conference hotel.

Please let us know if you are seeking accommodations for Friday evening.

The Westin hotel chain has recently made all their rooms nationwide smoke-free.
If you require a smoking room, click here for us to arrange offsite smoking accomodations for you at the conference rate.

We have a site available to help you find a conference roommate for your stay in Pittsburgh.

Note also that high-speed internet will be free in the rooms of conference guests.

Arrival Information

Visas are required for some, but not all visitors to the United States. See the following information regarding visas and their requirements, and if it is necessary for you to have one.

Getting to the Venue

There are several easy ways of getting from the Pittsburgh International Airport to the Westin Hotel. Here are a few options, listed in order of increasing cost. All transportation services are accessed on the baggage level of the arrival terminal, on the "Commercial Curbs" side of the terminal building.

  • The local transit authority, the Port Authority of Allegheny County, runs an express bus, the 28X Airport Flyer from the airport to downtown Pittsburgh. Fare is $2.25, exact change only, collected on the bus. The trip takes about 40 minutes, more during high-traffic times. The bus departs the airport every 20-30 minutes, depending on time of day; exact departure times can be found from the Port Authority or by calling 412-268-3526 and interacting with a spoken dialog system. Visitors choosing this option should get off the bus at the Seventh Avenue and William Penn Place stop, and walk north along William Penn Place / Tenth Street about 2 blocks to get to the Westin Hotel.
  • Express Shuttle USA runs a shuttle from the airport to the Westin Hotel for the fare of $19 per person one way, $34 round trip. Further information about this service may be found here.
  • Limousine buses — call Airline Transportation Company 412-321-8147 or Pittsburgh transportation company 412-322-8596 for prices.
  • A taxi can be taken from the airport to the hotel for about $30-35 per carload, including the tip. During rush hours the taxis may be no faster than the buses, which run on reserved roadways for part of the trip, but taxis are less expensive than the Express Shuttle service for two or more people traveling together.
  • All major car rental companies are represented at the airport. Renting a car is not recommended unless you wish to use it to tour the outlying attractions, as parking can be expensive in downtown Pittsburgh.

Pittsburgh is located within a short drive of a very large portion of the US population, so many attendees may choose to drive to the meeting. Parking at the Westin hotel is expensive, $18 per day during the weekdays. Some other parking lots in the area offer better prices. For example, the nearby lot on Penn Avenue between Seventh and Eight Streets is only $10 per day on most days. Further information on parking in downtown Pittsburgh (including locations and prices) may be found here or here.

General Information


Pittsburgh has a moderately warm climate in late September. The average high temperature is 76°F / 24°C and the average low temperature is 56°F / 13°C. Pittsburgh does not have a dry season, so it may rain on any day and at any time. It is always prudent to carry a small umbrella.

Time Zone

Pittsburgh is the Eastern Time Zone and will be following Daylight Savings time in September (GMT -4). It is in the same time zone as Boston, New York, Washington DC, Atlanta, Detroit, and Miami, one hour ahead of Chicago and Dallas, two hours ahead of Denver, and three hours ahead of San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Seattle.


The official language is English. While a sizable minority also speaks Spanish from a variety of Central and South American dialects, Spanish is not frequently encountered in Pittsburgh.


The only currency accepted is US Dollars. Foreign currency may be exchanged at some banks and exchange windows at the airport. Unfortunately, the banks charge a large premium on each transaction. It may be advisable to purchase dollars before your arrival. Credit cards are almost universally accepted (even at fast food establishments like McDonalds and Subway). There are Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) available at most bank branches and at various establishments, including the conference hotel. These machines will dispense US Dollars.


Tipping is expected in taxis, and at restaurants and bars, and is typically not included in the price. The usual rate is 15 percent, more for excellent service, or less for below-average service.

Medical Care

Pittsburgh is a major medical center in the US with many of its hospitals ranked among the top national institutions. The emergency number is 911. It is advisable to check with your insurance carrier regarding any coverage limitations during your travel.


Smoking is not permitted in the guestrooms and public spaces in the Westin Hotel. Many but not all restaurants in Pittsburgh offer a smoking area. The Allegheny County Council (which governs the county which includes Pittsburgh) is currently considering the imposition of a smoking ban at all restaurants. Bars continue to allow smoking.


The Westin Hotel is located in downtown Pittsburgh in close proximity to many large department stores and specialty boutiques.

Sales Tax

The local sales tax is 7 percent. This tax applies to all purchases except for clothing and groceries. Purchases by mail or over the internet from vendors outside Pennsylvania that are shipped to Pittsburgh usually are not taxed.


Wireless internet connectivity is provided free of charge by the hotel in the guestrooms and in the public areas. Mobile phones in the USA use a variety of standards with GSM compatibility supported by some but not all providers.

Electrical Current

110 Volts AC, 60 Hz. Electrical outlets accept standard North American two-pronged (without ground) or three-pronged plugs.


You can see the conference location via Google Maps:

1000 Penn Avenue
Pittsburgh PA 15222
Venue Map