Tampa Convention Center Skyline

Tampa Convention Center Holds Grand Opening for New Waterfront Meeting Rooms

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The Tampa Convention Center held a ribbon-cutting ceremony and grand opening for its new Waterfront Meeting Rooms, marking the completion of the center’s largest renovation project since it was built in 1990. The Capital Improvement project featured a 23,500-square-foot, two-story expansion to the Tampa Convention Center in Downtown Tampa, including 18 new waterfront rooms that will provide flexible meeting and event space to better accommodate conferences and conventions coming to the Tampa Bay region.
“These are world-class improvements, befitting of a world-class convention center and city,” said Tampa Mayor Jane Castor. “This is the largest renovation in the center’s history and ensures that it and the city of Tampa will continue to be a highly sought-after meeting and event destination.”
The project included extensive upgrades throughout the Tampa Convention Center. Improvements were made to the popular Tampa Riverwalk outside the center, such as new railings, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant ramps, a canopy metal ceiling, and new column wraps. Another significant upgrade was the installation of new signage for the Tampa Convention Center complete with LED multi-color exterior letters and three rows of colorful lights added to the façade to light up the Downtown Tampa skyline and more prominently feature the convention center’s prime location.
As part of the Tampa Convention Center’s commitment to sustainability, the center invested in comprehensive updates to its heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system, resulting in lower energy consumption and cost savings for clients.
The construction was completed by Skanska USA in partnership with the design firm Baker Barrios Architects and Convergence Design.
“The city of Tampa is a world-class destination deserving of an upgraded convention center that complements its economic and population growth,” said Chuck Jablon, Senior Vice President of Construction for Skanska's Florida building operations. “By executing the modernization of the Tampa Convention Center, Skanska is proud to have played a part in bringing that vision to life and delivering a project that will provide long-term economic value for the community.”
The project began in November 2021 and was finished on schedule in June 2023. The Tampa Convention Center remained open for business during the construction phase to accommodate ongoing events. To ensure public safety, a portion of the Tampa Riverwalk was closed for a portion of the construction, and a multitude of signs directed pedestrians to a detour.
The new Waterfront Meeting Rooms are now available for venue rental, offering a unique space for event planners. These rooms allow for the Tampa Convention Center to remain competitive in the meetings and events industry and continue to serve as a major economic engine for the City of Tampa.
The total cost of the project was approximately $44.5 million, including $38 million for Phase 2. Skanska was able to manage the project budget to allow for savings that the Tampa Convention Center used to fund additional renovations.
For more information on the Capital Improvement Project at the Tampa Convention Center, go to https://www.tampa.gov/tcc/capital-improvements/projects.

Photos of the new Tampa Convention Center facade available for download here: https://photos.app.goo.gl/95XFLm6ehMUxsg2AA