San Antonio Moves Ahead with Convention Center Expansion

HIL ANDERSON, SENIOR EDITOR
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San Antonio, TX – San Antonio will formally solicit candidates to design an expansion of the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center (HBGCC) in late June, the city announced. The $325 million project will expand the center’s prime exhibit space to 500,000 square feet and will also add a 50,000 square foot ballroom the city said would be the largest in the state of Texas.

“This expansion will enable us to host larger and more concurrent conventions while gaining in national prominence,” said Michael Sawaya, director of the City of San Antonio’s Convention, Sports and Entertainment Facilities Department.

San Antonio’s convention center currently is ranked 33rd on the Trade Show Executive World’s Top Convention Center roster with 440,000 square feet of prime space. Although the exact dimensions of the expansions have yet to be finalized, expanding the HBGCC would bring it to the same size as the 30th-ranked Atlantic City Convention Center.

The HBGCC was built in 1968 and has been expanded three times since then. It currently boasts 192,000 square feet of meeting space and three ballrooms.

The city plans to begin construction on the expansion by the end of the year with completion in 2016. The addition will be built on to the newest section of the current building. Once completed, the hall on the west side of the complex will be torn down to make way for redevelopment of the adjacent HemisFair Park.

The city said the project would not interfere with operations at the HBGCC.

Reach Michael Sawaya at (210) 207-8500 or michael.sawaya@sanantonio.gov