Friday, May 14, 2021

Convention center expansions: Las Vegas reaches 93% completion, Orlando postpones

The $980 million West Hall Expansion of the Las Vegas Convention Center (above illustration) will add 14 million square feet including 600,000 square feet of new, leasable exhibit space, a 14,000 square foot outdoor terrace able to hold receptions with up to 2,000 attendees, and a grand atrium.

As of September 1, 2020, the project is 93% complete with an expected completion in December 2020.

Las Vegas Convention Center expansion and Loop images:

The expansion will be linked to the existing convention halls via a new $52.5 million transportation system (LVCC Loop) from Elon Musk’s The Boring Company, currently under construction. The system will transport convention attendees from one hall to another in approximately one minute via automated Tesla vehicles traveling in underground tunnels.

Orange County Convention Center

In Orlando, the Orange County Convention Center has halted its $605 million Capital Improvement Plan for two Campus Master Plan projects. The Convention Way Grand Concourse and the Multipurpose Venue expansion were scheduled to bring total exhibit space at the OCCC to 2.3 million square feet.

The Multipurpose Venue has been planned to bring an additional 200,000 square feet of contiguous exhibit space in the South Building. Overall, the South Building will have a total of 675,141 square feet of exhibit space for a grand total of 1.15 million square feet of exhibit space in the North-South Building. The Multipurpose Venue will also incorporate connectivity between the North and South concourses.

The Convention Way Grand Concourse expansion includes an additional 60,000 square feet of meeting space and an 80,000 square foot ballroom along with a new entry to the North-South Building along Convention Way.

Orange County Convention Center expansion images:

In an email to OCCC stakeholders, Executive Director Mark Tester wrote: “There is no doubt that the economic impact of the pandemic has been felt across the industry by the vast event postponements and cancellations. The OCCC has also been affected by the decline in Tourist Development Tax (TDT) revenues, as well as the cancellations of trade shows and conventions. The Orange County Board of County Commissioners have made the decision to postpone the construction of the North-South Building Expansion upon the recovery of TDT revenues in Orange County.

“Additionally, the architecture and design contract for the OCCC expansion project has been suspended for 120 days, without penalty or cost to Orange County. We will closely monitor economic conditions and TDT collections during this period, and if we conclude that design should not resume, we may terminate the contract with the design team for convenience with a 30-day notice. With the decision to postpone all construction activities until TDT collections return to healthy levels, we no longer require the services of a Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR).”

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