City council approves $38M contract for Tampa Convention Center expansion, renovation


Tampa Convention Center won a key approval needed to start its $38 million expansion and renovation.

On Thursday, Tampa City Council unanimously approved a $38 million contract with Skanska USA and the convention center for its capital improvement project, which entails adding two floors that will create 18,000 square feet of new waterfront meeting rooms.

It also upgrades to existing meeting spaces, ballrooms and exhibit halls.

The approval allows the work to begin, which is essential to bring more economic impact to the region. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, large events have been canceled, affecting hotel room stays and other consumer spending. The renovations are expected to improve one of the area’s largest waterfront assets, and additional rooms could bring in more revenue as the center will be able to host more events.

“Today we take the first step in the expansion of TCC in over two decades. The renovation of our meeting spaces and the additional meeting rooms will allow us to remain competitive in an ever-changing market. Through these efforts we will be able to attract larger events and bring more visitors and business to Tampa,” Convention Center and Tourism Director Una Garvey said in the city’s release.

Initially, TCC had a $2.1 million build and design contract with Skanska. Typically for any project, design and conceptual plans are the first step in the process.

The project is expected to be completed by 2023.

The convention center recently underwent other renovations with Tampa-based RR Simmons, including restrooms and adding food vendors. However, that work has been completed and now the center wanted execute a contract with Skanska for further work.

Skanska’s design team includes approximately 81 percent of women/minority business enterprise participation.