Expanded Convention Center to Remake Dallas’ Meeting Capabilities

A Sponsored Message From Visit Dallas

Author: Curt Wagner       

rendering Dallas convention center exterior

Construction on the $2-billion expanded convention center in downtown Dallas will begin in 2024. (Artist’s rendering)

With its central location in the U.S., world-class entertainment venues, and eclectic neighborhoods, Dallas long has been known as a destination for meetings. Plans for a 2.5-million-square-foot expanded convention center that will be surrounded by a new restaurant and entertainment experience will give meeting planners and their groups another great reason to choose Dallas for their events.

Construction on the $2-billion expansion is expected to break ground in 2024 and to open in 2029. It will be built next to the current Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center Dallas, which is expected to be partly demolished after construction is completed.

The expanded convention center is “a game changer for Dallas that will put our city on the map as the preeminent large-city convention and meeting destination in the nation,” said Craig Davis, Visit Dallas President & CEO.

The center will feature 800,000 square feet of exhibit space, 300,000 square feet of breakout space, and a 160,000-square-foot ballroom. Plans for the center address the needs of event organizers in the new event environment that COVID has helped shape, namely more open spaces and outdoor areas. A welcoming entry and lobby will create open space for activities and programming, and the large, elevated ballrooms will feature outdoor event terraces boasting views of the Trinity River and downtown Dallas.

rendering of new Dallas Convention Center

Plans for the expanded convention center address the needs of event organizers in the new event environment that COVID-19 has helped shape, namely more open spaces and outdoor areas. (Artist’s rendering)

According to city officials, the expanded center is expected to nearly double annual event attendance and related revenue for the city. For Jennifer Krsanac, director of meeting services for the North American Spine Society, the expanded ballroom and breakout spaces mean that her organization will now be able to consider Dallas for its future annual meetings.

rendering of Dallas convention center terrace

Outdoor terraces will give event attendees at the expanded convention center views of downtown Dallas and beyond. (Artist’s rendering)

“Without the new expansion, the [current] convention center did not provide our meeting ample space and adequate flow for our meeting attendees,” Krsanac said. “I am excited to follow this project and its positive impact on the city of Dallas and the future of the meetings industry.”

The center will anchor a new restaurant and entertainment experience that will provide an “authentic, walkable Dallas urban experience” with restaurants, retail, hotels, and entertainment, according to Visit Dallas. The district will connect downtown Dallas with neighboring entertainment areas, allowing attendees to easily enjoy the hip cocktail bars and eclectic live music venues in the Cedars area as well as take advantage of shopping opportunities and the multiple transportation possibilities in the planned Rail District.

The new restaurant and entertainment experience “will excite convention goers and revitalize southern Downtown Dallas,” Davis said, “making it a place for locals to enjoy alongside our convention attendees.”

Learn more about plans for the expanded convention center, and how the experts at Visit Dallas can help with meeting planning, by clicking the link in the logo below.

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