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Convention centers of the future, designed today (Collaborate Meetings)

March 22, 2015 by  
Filed under Articles and Features

LA Convention CenterLook around and take note. It’s a booming time for convention center construction and renovation throughout the country. From Houston and Oklahoma City to Nashville and San Diego, there are at least a dozen major convention center projects currently underway. And it’s not simply the number of projects going on that’s most remarkable. It’s how quickly the design of the conventional convention center is evolving. The needs of planners and meetings continue to change, and as a result, architects say convention center design is advancing at a rapid pace. While facilities of the past were built as utilitarian boxes to hold as many people as possible, they’re now strategically designed to be functional, beautiful, efficient and full of amenities. The convention centers of the future are here today.

Thoughtful Design

Convention centers are no longer just about utility. They exist to impress. Many modern facilities feature glass facades, suspended banners and mood lights. Other facilities play up architectural elements and showcase exposed 3-D trusses, cable-stayed roofs and long roof overhangs. They’re also decorated with unique color schemes, sculptures, artwork, designer materials, and furniture in waiting areas and bathrooms.

Todd Voth, senior principal at Populous, an architecture firm in Kansas City, Mo., says today’s successful convention centers need five critical attributes: beauty, functional efficiency, urban integration, a spirit of place and sustainability. Voth says Populous designs every convention center with those characteristics in mind. From the front entrance and lobby to the bathroom facilities and large meeting rooms, he says beauty and aesthetics are as important as functionality.

Read the full article at Collaborate Meetings.

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