Top of the World — Colorado Convention Center Completes Expansion

The rooftop expansion includes the largest multifunction ballroom in the state

Last month, hundreds of dignitaries gathered to celebrate the completion of the Colorado Convention Center (CCC) Expansion Project, signaling to the global convention industry that the facility is now open for business.

Located on the roof of the existing building, the expansion of the CCC includes the new 80,000-square-foot Bluebird Ballroom that can be subdivided into 19 rooms of varying sizes, allowing for countless configurations. It’s now the largest multifunction ballroom in Colorado, with the capacity to host more than 7,500 attendees for a general session or 4,600 guests for a catered event.

The expansion also includes 35,000 square feet of wrap-around pre-function concourse space with floor to ceiling windows, providing new areas for between-the-meetings networking that is so highly sought after by today’s meeting professionals. The third signature feature is a 20,000-square-foot outdoor rooftop terrace with dramatic views of the Rocky Mountains and Denver’s city skyline.

“The expansion of our facility was designed by meeting planners, for meeting planners by pairing new, flexible multi-function spaces, industry-leading sustainability and technology features with expansive views of the Rocky Mountains from the new rooftop terrace,” said Richard W. Scharf, President and CEO of VISIT DENVER. “These new best-in-class offerings of both function and beauty will lend to Denver’s success in a very competitive meetings and conventions industry.”

Keeping pace with innovations and demand, new features of the expansion include various technology improvements and seamless integration with the existing building, providing easy access to its 600,000 square feet of exhibit space, 105,000 square feet of meeting space, two existing ballrooms of 50,000 square feet and 35,000 square feet respectively, and the 5,000-seat Bellco Theatre.

“This expansion will also assist us with hosting multiple groups simultaneously to maximize capacity,” said Scharf. “Ultimately, these improvements will drive new business for Denver and create a better experience for the meeting professional and attendees.”

Already a key economic driver for the city, the CCC upgrades are expected to generate an additional $85 million in annual economic impact. Denver’s Department of Transportation and Infrastructure delivered the $233 million CCC expansion in partnership with design and construction contractor Hensel Phelps, designer TVS, program management consultant Rider Levett Bucknall, Denver Arts and Venues, VISIT DENVER and convention center operator ASM Global.

A total of 66 minority- and women-owned businesses contributed to the project, accounting for 22% of design participation and 17% of construction participation.

The first group to occupy the space will be the National Science Teaching Association group in March 2024. The new rooftop expansion is already paying off, with 14 future groups noting that they wouldn’t have booked Denver without the additional meeting space, garnering nearly $200 million in economic impact, with many more groups looking at the venue.

Any thoughts, opinions, or news? Please share them with me at vince@meetingsevents.com.

Safety and Security Primer

While it is true that there was little organizers of the Kansas City Super Bowl celebration could have done to prevent the horrific shooting, the incident can serve as a reminder to all event planners of the importance of having safety protocols in place at all events.

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