A major renovation and expansion of the Las Vegas Convention Center is under development, the first part of a ambitious plan to transform the city’s meetings infrastructure and create what the city is calling, the “Las Vegas Global Business District.”

The plan includes three major initiatives. The first calls for updating and expanding the Las Vegas Convention Center and developing a “convention district campus.” The expansion project will add lobby, exhibition, meeting, and general session space—as well as new food and beverage outlets. Also, technology will be upgraded throughout the facility. Public gathering spaces will be added outside the building, along with various design elements to enhance the neighborhood and establish a cohesive business district. This will be the first major expansion of the 54-year-old Las Vegas Convention Center in more than a decade.

The second part of the plan involves increasing Las Vegas’s exposure to international markets. The city would do this by building a new world trade show facility and leveraging the World Trade Center designation that the city currently holds. The designation, bestowed by the World Trade Center Association, provides the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority with opportunities to market the destination to business travelers around the globe under the World Trade Center brand.  With a new World Trade Center facility, the LVCVA hopes to increase international market share by attracting more meetings and conventions to the destination.

The third element is to create a centralized transportation hub to improve connectivity and flow in the resort corridor. The LVCVA is working with local transportation stakeholders to define a long-term strategy to accommodate the movement of people as Las Vegas projects to host approximately 44 million annual visitors.

“Las Vegas is known for defining moments that change the hospitality industry, and this project will be the next defining moment,” said Rossi Ralenkotter, president/CEO of the LVCVA. “This is more than a project, this is a vision that will launch Las Vegas forward ahead of the competition for decades to come.”

The project will be developed in phases over several years.  The first phase, over the next two years, will include programming and design, the development of overall budget, improvements to the current space at the Las Vegas Convention Center, and land acquisition. Phase one will cost roughly $150 million.