Charlotte Convention Center Expansion


Charlotte Convention Center Authority


Construction Cost: $110,000,000

Completion Date: 2021

Project Size: 161,024 SF

Charlotte Convention Center Expansion

North Carolina

Since opening in 1995, the Charlotte Convention Center has been an engine of economic activity in Charlotte, conveniently located in the heart of Charlotte’s bustling Uptown urban district. In response to continued growth in demand and to keep the Center competitive with newer facilities, The Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority launched a major expansion to add 50,000 SF of meeting and pre-function spaces while more conveniently connecting convention-goers to nearby hotels, restaurants, and amenities.

Because the Center’s urban site is confined on all four sides, vertical expansion was the only option. Unfortunately, the 90 ft span roof trusses that cover the exhibit space below did not have the structural capacity to accommodate the new loading of a vertical expansion. Our team evaluated a variety of structural and sequencing options before devising an elegant scheme using pairs of new queen posts and tension rods to reinforce the main trusses. The system was sequentially installed and carefully post-tensioned to control load balancing and deflections, thereby minimizing downtime of the active exhibit hall below.

Modeled on the New York City High Line, the connecting plaza offers visitors a memorable park-like atmosphere, with large public gathering spaces, a cantilevered lighted “jewel box” seating area overlooking Stonewall Street, and a grand stair that provides access to the street below. The beautiful jewel box structure creates a distinctive new icon for the Center and a gathering place for tourists and locals alike.