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Waterloo Convention Center makes progress; hosting events on the 1st floor

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Image of the interior of the first floor.
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Image of construction crews working on the second floor of the convention center.
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Image of the second floor construction inside the Waterloo Convention Center

WATERLOO, Iowa (KWWL) - Now being able to host events on the first floor, the newly designed Waterloo Convention Center has made a lot of progress.

Formerly known as the Five Sullivan Brothers Convention Center, the convention center has come a long way since 2019, when the project was at a standstill due to financial setbacks and a lawsuit between the previous management company and the architect.

Now, folks are able to walk inside the first floor and see the new, modern designs, but more importantly, can book your next event there!

RENOVATIONS TO THE FIRST FLOOR:

  • Brand new ceilings
  • New LED lighting
  • Updated Exhibition Hall
  • Modern tile on the staircases
  • Took out the Seminar Room to open up the lobby
  • and more.

Although the first floor is fully functioning, there is still construction for the second floor. Creating new ceilings, meeting rooms, and more, crews are still working on foundational fixes to match the look of the first floor.

Hoping to finish the second floor by December 2021, Waterloo Mayor Quentin Hart said he's excited to host versatile events when the project is finished.

"We can host large event concerts, large banquets, wrestling events, but we also have the flexibility to have smaller events and the upstairs will give us the dual-ability to do that," Hart said.

Wanting to give the convention center a facelift for some time now, Hart also said the finished product will be a driving force for Waterloo's future.

"Our convention center has the ability to attract hundreds of thousands of people per year. It has a huge economic impact on the surrounding businesses, hotels, small businesses," Hart said, "we need something that we're proud of, something that we can take pride in, something that people will be able to come from all around the country to our convention center."

The total price tag for the project is around $10.1 million, and crews are also working on the exterior of the building. On top of adding a new video board and main entrance, Mayor Hart said they are also working on 'Veterans Way'.

'Veterans Way' will be an art and history walk that will connect the east and west sides of Waterloo. All of the art and activities included in 'Veterans Way' will be dedicated to all the veterans in the area.

Other additions will be installing big letters that will spell out 'Waterloo' in front of the convention center. Crews are also constructing the 'Five Sullivan Brothers Memorial Plaza' which will be an area dedicated to the family and veterans in Waterloo.

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Alaina Kwan

Morning Reporter

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