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Jan. 13, 2014

Washington State Convention Center Acquires Nearby Parcels for $56.5M While Pondering Expansion Options

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

As the Pacific Northwest continues to grow, the hospitality markets in Seattle and Portland are growing, as well. Now both of the major cities in the area have seen the necessity of a larger convention center in order to cash in on the growing market for large events. Other cities on the West Coast have already begun their moves to expand existing convention facilities and have moved to the format of the hotel-convention center. With an expansion plan in its sights, the Washington State Convention Center Public Facilities District recently completed the purchase of a land site in Seattle’s central business district. The value of the deal stood at $56.5 million, according to The Seattle Times.

The WSCC purchased the former Honda of Seattle property, consisting of five different land parcels located between Ninth Avenue North and Boren Avenue, and Howell Street and Olive Way, from former owner Cassieford Co. of the Auburn. A Honda dealership occupies approximately 86,900 square feet of space. The Honda Center will relocate to Seattle’s Sodo neighborhood, the Puget Sound Business Journal writes. The site offers the Washington State Convention Center proximity to the Denny Triangle, the future home of the much-talked-about Amazon campus. The location is also in the vicinity of a King County-operated transit station.

According to the Times, the WSCC has been discussing expansion plans for more than a year now, and the newly acquired land parcels would offer serious options to that initiative. The possibility exists for an additional 170,000 square feet of space underground for use as an exhibit facility, as well a surface facility totaling 140,000 square feet of exhibit space. The convention center currently comprises two facilities, each offering about 100,000 square feet, a total exhibition space of 205,000 square feet. The cost for the expansion project would stand at around $650 million to 700 million.  

 Image courtesy of wscc.com

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