On Friday business, political and hospitality leaders gathered to celebrate the groundbreaking of the Sharonville Convention Center
expansion. The ceremony garnered the attention of elected officials from the State of Ohio, Hamilton County, City of Cincinnati and other nearby communities.
The excitement was surrounding the $30 million expansion of the convention center located in Cincinnati's northern suburbs. Once complete the expansion project will more the double the amount of meeting rooms and floor space at the convention center resulting in 19 rooms and more than 63,000 total square feet of meeting space. Officials also boasted about the 1,000-plus free parking spaces that will be available at the expanded Sharonville Convention Center.
Funding the $30 million project during a difficult economy was made possible through positive returns on the Hamilton County hotel tax. The tax previously helped fund the expansion of the Duke Energy Convention Center
located in downtown Cincinnati, and has been more recently argued over by Hamilton County communities looking to get their piece of the proverbial pie.
The Sharonville Convention Center has become an attractive alternative for smaller conventions and those looking to be closer to the businesses in Cincinnati's northern suburbs. Attracting nearly 200,000 people annually, the Sharonville Convention Center opened in 1994 and now hosts thousands of events each year.
The convention center, located at 11355 Chester Road (map
), will stay open during construction and hopes to eventually draw more trade shows in addition to the small scale conventions and business meetings currently held there.
Writer: Randy A. SimesPhotography by Scott Beseler
Stay connected by following Randy on Twitter @SoapboxRandy