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Waterloo City Council approves new management for Five Sullivan Brothers Convention Center

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WATERLOO, Iowa (KWWL) - The hot question of 'Who will manage the Five Sullivan Brothers Convention Center?' is answered Monday night at Waterloo City Council.

Waterloo City Council approved a five year management agreement with Spectra, a nationwide venue management company based out of Philadelphia.

Spectra has many clients in Iowa, they currently oversee the Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines and Tyson Events Center in Sioux City.

The public at council split over the decision on bringing Spectra to the Five Sullivan Brothers Convention Center.

"If they are not a city employee, why do we have in this contract, we are going to pay them back for all the expenses they're going to incur?"

"I've worked personally with Spectra Management in one of our large events in Des Moines for the past 10 years, and they're a first class operation."

The agreement is for five years, along with an option to renew. Council along with Mayor Hart say this is good for the Cedar Valley.

"This is the city and the company coming together, so we have to have some skin in the game too, and I think it's all reasonable," says Ward 1 Councilperson Margaret Klein. "I really do and I wish you well, go get 'em."

"Proper management facilities and hotel that the citizens of Waterloo deserve, and everyone that's going to come to the city so I want to thank all of you, and thank council as well," says Waterloo Mayor Quentin Hart.

Spectra plans to invest $350,000 into the convention center, upgrading signing and revenue services. The convention center's renovation is part of the agreement with Makenda L.L.C. to renovate the Ramada. Spectra's Vice President of Business Development Peter Zingoni, says they plan to bring different entertainment to Waterloo.

"It won't be used as that traditional rotary business, we want to continue to drive that rotary business, but want to enhance that experience and drive some new meanings," says Zingoni. "This means more concerts and entertainment options for the town."

The management agreement passed through council unanimously. Spectra will officially take over management starting this Wednesday.

Vinny Lowerre

Producer & Multimedia Journalist

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