LEXINGTON, KY (LEX 18) – At its monthly meeting today, The Board of Directors of the Lexington Center Corporation voted unanimously to award Messer Construction Company the contract to build the new and expanded Lexington Convention Center.
The $241 M winning contract bid, recommended by the Convention Center Expansion Project Committee, will keep intact the original 2014 design and vision of the project. Bid proposals were received from three general contractors and opened on June 12, 2018.
The contract includes: All new construction costs, demolition of the Jefferson Street Bridge including the north abutment, new UK Hospitality Clubs, new upper arena chairback seats and new parking structures. The three-year construction project is slated to begin with a public groundbreaking in mid-July, 2018 and be completed in November 2021. The project will be built in phases to allow Rupp Arena and much of the existing convention center to remain in operation during construction.
The original 2014 Lexington Convention Center design, approved in December of 2016, was developed by NBBJ Architects of Los Angeles CA and EOP Architects, Lexington and includes 100,800 sq ft of exhibit halls, a 25,185 ballroom, 30,270 sq ft of flexible meeting spaces and 110,234 sq. ft of pre-function and circulation space.
According to LCC Chairman Craig Turner, “Today marks a very happy ending and an exciting new beginning to a project that will transform the life of downtown Lexington. There are many people to thank for their commitment and unwavering support of this project. We thank Mayor Jim Gray for first proposing the project in 2011 and former LCC Chairman Brent Rice who spearheaded it. Our gratitude extends to Governor Bevin and Secretary Landrum for the Commonwealth’s financial support. Special thanks to Councilmen Bill Farmer and Kevin Stinnett who were great advocates for this project and to LFUCG City Council for providing its financial support. Thanks also to VisitLex for its financial contributions. We thank the University of Kentucky for its commitment for the next 15 years, revitalizing Rupp Arena as the primary place and home court for UK basketball. And finally, thanks to Lexington Center CEO and President Bill Owen, and the staff of Lexington Center.”