Von Braun Center pitches expansion plan to Huntsville City Council
Huntsville, AL June 23, 2017: The Von Braun Center announced a $42 million expansion plan to the current facility with a focus on convention space.
The proposed expansion would include:
Parking Garage Expansion
Renovation to North Hall
As bookings for conventions and group meetings continue to increase, it is vital for the VBC to expand in order to remain competitive in the regional and national market. In addition to the expansion, upgrades to the existing facility are necessary to accommodate the growing demand for local group meetings and social functions. Current patrons and clients have expressed their desire for an improved and updated facility as well as a need for more rentable space. The VBC has lost existing business due to lack of space and lack of available dates. Many other clients convey concern about their events outgrowing the current space available. A study conducted by an outside consultant three years ago to determine the best use of the remaining property at the VBC revealed a necessity for additional quality rentable space and improvements to existing space in order to continue to compete for conventions and conferences. The VBC currently hosts over 800,000 guests per year and generates an estimated $72 million of annual economic impact.
The basis for the addition of a new music hall came from the increase in 800-1,500 capacity music halls in the surrounding areas and the southeast. As the VBC has a tremendous demand for events in the Mark C. Smith Concert Hall and Playhouse, the additional 1,200 capacity music hall would fill the need for increased concert demand.
Funding for the expansion and renovation project would be provided by a 2% increase in lodging tax and a $1 per room night surcharge. In addition, the VBC will fund a portion of the project through additional revenue generated by the increased facility usage.