According to a consultant, a new convention center would make Dallas more competitive.
ByFunAsia 09 Dec 2021 10:53 PM 123

A consultant and municipal staff agreed on Tuesday that Dallas needs to build a new convention center to compete with other cities throughout the country.

According to the consultant and city employees, the downtown Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, which got completed in 1957, does not have enough rooms, current renovations, or surrounding amenities to allow the city to attract the most lucrative events.

What is their solution? For $1.9 billion, construct a new one. However, they must first obtain clearance from the City Council.

In January, the city paid $5 million to WSP USA Inc., an engineering and design firm, to prepare a 10-year makeover for the convention center on South Griffin Street and the surrounding neighborhood, which stretches from the Eddie Bernice Johnson Union Station on the west to the Dallas Farmers Market.

The panel urged council members on Tuesday that the most expensive of three options should get pursued. According to the consultant, a new center would spur further development downtown and bring in billions in expenditure and new property taxes.

One council member expressed concern about the convention center's and Omni Hotel's outstanding debt of more than $600 million.

The consultant believes that constructing a new convention center west of Lamar Street, with stretches over Interstate 30, will spur the most development and allow convention business to continue even while the center gets built. Other solutions for upgrading or expanding the existing plant could result in revenue loss due to disruptions.

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