The 40-year-old convention center in Albuquerque is half way through its $20 million restoration. Albuquerque Business First reported that the city hosted an event last Tuesday to mark the finalization of Phase I of the redevelopment.
The construction started in February 2013 amidst ongoing convention business. The local architectural firm Dekker/Perich/Sabatini was selected to create a design that reflects Albuquerque’s history, art, culture and environment. Phase I of the project focuses on a complete remodel of the ballrooms, the kitchen, and the tasting room. The funds for both phases of the project derive from the refinancing of the debt on the building.
Phase II is scheduled to begin in August 2013 with completion date in October 2014. It includes a new entrance to the West Complex, balcony and shade for the ballroom, executive conference room, and atrium improvements to include a fireplace. The costs for the Phase II upgrades are estimated at about $11.6 million. In addition to these renovations, the free wireless Internet access points are being expanded, and the LED lighting is being upgraded.
The city is banking on the renovation to pay off by making the Convention Center more marketable. The face-lift will generate more bookings, and direct spending by convention center attendees is estimated to increase from the $10.7 million in 2013 to $21.6 million in 2014.
Photo credits: Albuquerque Convention Center