LA selects HMC Architects and Populous for convention centre expansion

1 July 2015 (Last Updated July 1st, 2015 18:30)

Los Angeles City Council has selected US-based design firms HMC Architects and Populous for the expansion and upgrade of the city's ageing convention centre in California.

Los Angeles City Council has selected US-based design firms HMC Architects and Populous for the expansion and upgrade of the city's ageing convention centre in California.

The firms are likely to negotiate deals with the city authorities over the next three months, reports Southern California Public Radio (KPCC).

Development of the 1971-built convention room has been in progress for a long time, with major conventions being hosted elsewhere due to the present condition of the centre.

Los Angeles Convention Center director Bud Ovrom was quoted by KPCC as saying: "The convention business has become a lot more competitive.

"Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has a goal to double hotel room availability by 2020."

"There are wonderful venues just on the West Coast."

The city attracts 22 major conventions a year, whereas San Francisco hosts 52 and San Diego organises 75 annually.

Lack of availability of hotel rooms is also a major issue for the city, as Los Angeles can offer only 4,000 hotel rooms within walking distance of the centre.

Comparatively, San Francisco and Anaheim respectively have around 20,000 and 10,000 hotel rooms in service.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has a goal to double hotel room availability by 2020.

Bud Ovrom said the city is likely to fulfil the target as The Wilshire Grand alone anticipates gaining an extra 900 rooms in 2017.

AEG has also announced a 755-room expansion for its JW Marriott property in the city, which is likely to be opened in May.