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Design Team Picked For Expansion of San Diego Convention Center

12 November 2010 by

San Diego Comic Con InternationalThere’s been a long-running fracas, so to speak, in fandom about whether the San Diego Comic-Con would have to move to some larger venue in Las Vegas or Anaheim due to attendance outgrowing the most recent expansion of the San Diego Convention Center. The issue’s been settled recently with the Comic-Con announcing that it will stay in the town of its inception, sunny San Diego, through 2015. (Its original contract with the Convention Center will be up in 2012)

That decision was announced by the San Diego Comic-Con in September 30 and on November 8 the executive board of the San Diego Convention Center Corp. announced that it had chosen a design team for the proposed $700 million expansion of the downtown facility. The winning team, chosen from among five finalists, includes Fentress Architects, John Portman & Associates and Civitas Inc. (see a video of the announcement here)

And the projected design is quite a humdinger. One of its features, in response to downtowners’ complaints about the Convention Center ugly-ing up the view of the bay, is a roof-top garden. In fact, in a November 9 statement, San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders said that the inclusion of this 5-acre rooftop park was part of why the groups’ design was chosen.

The question now, though, is how to pay for the expansion. Earlier this year Mayor Sanders of San Diego suggested a plan where downtown business will pony up money to fund the Convention Center expansion; after all, they benefit directly from it. How the funding will eventually be pulled off remains to be sorted out, though.

So, enough, lead up. Here’s the winning design of the “Phase III” expansion of the San Diego Convention Center: (see a video of the design, plus announcement, here)

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