A public/private partnership designed to create a new convention center in downtown Muskegon, Michigan, will connect a 201-room full-service hotel, a new 45,000 net square foot convention center, and the city’s LC Walker Arena to become a modern convention and exposition campus.
The public/private partnership between the County of Muskegon, City of Muskegon, and Parkland Properties of Michigan, calls for a $17 million convention center connected to a renovated and rebranded hotel – at a cost of $6 million – and the L.C. Walker Arena, which has just completed a $1.7 million renovation to modernize the 1960s-era arena, with an additional $1.5 million investment in roofing and HVAC improvements planned for the facility. Total estimated investment in the convention/exposition campus is estimated to exceed $26 million.
“The LC Walker Arena is an important part of the fabric of our community,” said Muskegon City Manager Frank Peterson. “People young and old have great memories of watching hockey and attending concerts at the LC. We feel the addition of the convention center will only enhance our growing downtown and provide new opportunities to host larger meetings, conventions, exhibits,
etc. This is a great opportunity to breathe new life into the arena, and ensure that future generations can make similar memories in that building as well as create new memories in our new convention center.”
“The public/private partnership is a long term relationship that allows Muskegon County to achieve goals that otherwise would be unachievable due to PA59 limitations” said Muskegon County Administrator Mark Eisenbarth. “This partnership will give Muskegon County a boost to businesses development, increase competitiveness in the convention marketplace, and increase business
tourism in Muskegon County. It adds to the year-round aspects of tourism in Muskegon County, and will help us draw new meetings, conventions, and events to the County.”
Progressive AE of Grand Rapids was chosen as the architecture and engineering firm for the project, and has been working with the County of Muskegon, the City of Muskegon, and Parkland Properties on initial siting and concept design for the convention center, and the project is now in the Design Development phase.
The convention center portion of the project will be funded with county accommodations taxes and assessments collected from hotels located within the City of Muskegon and will result in a 45,000 net square foot convention center connected to the 201-room Holiday Inn Muskegon Harbor, owned by Parkland Properties and currently undergoing a $6 million renovation and rebranding to become a Delta by Marriott.