Preparing for its seventh expansion, the Anaheim Convention Center, the largest exhibition center on the West Coast, plans to increase by 200,000 square feet. Construction on the LEED certified venue is set to begin in April 2015 and is expected to complete by May 2017.
Hoping to attract more events and meeting group, the $180 million expansion includes additional meeting rooms, ballrooms and exhibit halls within a glass structure, and replacing the Car Park 1 parking structure.
Operation of the Anaheim Convention Center supports the city’s General Fund, providing approximately 50 percent of its tax revenues. According to outside consultant Crossroads Consulting Services, the city of Anaheim could benefit by nearly $115 million over the next decade and $320 million over a 30-year period with the Convention Center’s expansion.
Originally set to begin this year, the expansion project was delayed by a lawsuit brought on by a local organization against Citigroup, who retreated from the bond financing in May 2014.
Although approved by City Council in March 2014, the Coalition of Anaheim Taxpayers for Economic Responsibility (CATER) alleged that the bond sale needed to be approved through a public vote in accordance with a City Charter. In September, an Orange County Superior Court judge ruled for the sale of the bonds to finance the project.
$258.9 million in lease revenue bonds are to refinance the Convention Center’s existing debt as well as support $20 million in community improvements, according to city officials.