The Charlotte Convention Center, designed by tvsdesign, opened in 1995. Since then the needs of meeting planners and convention attendees have evolved, requiring investment in the facility to deliver a competitive experience. Based on recommendations from a market study commissioned by the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority, tvsdesign explored a series of potential improvements and together with the staff developed a master plan for expanding and enhancing the center.
A major need identified by the study was for additional meeting space. Since there is no available land adjacent to the center, it is not currently possible to expand beyond the existing building’s footprint to create this space. tvsdesign therefore investigated and found ways to expand the building vertically by adding new floor space above the existing exhibit halls. This additional space will provide 15 new meeting divisions with 26,000 sf. This new area also creates a new public concourse façade along Stonewall Street, currently the neglected back side of the building, greatly improving the center’s connectivity to the city. Other highlights of the master plan include:
• Conversion of an existing exhibit hall to a flex hall with the potential of subdividing into twelve meeting rooms.
• Conversion of an existing terrace into new interior space that can serve as expanded prefunction space or convert to three new glass-enclosed meeting divisions with natural light, city views and direct access to the ballroom and outdoor spaces.
• A new green terrace bridging over Stonewall Street to create a pedestrian connection to the new mixed use development across the street, and to the linear park planned alongside the light rail corridor.