Design & Development

LA Convention Center set for expansion ahead of 2028 Olympics

Featured image credit: Americo Toledano/CC BY-SA 4.0/Edited for size

The Los Angeles City Council has voted to move forward with an expansion project for the LA Convention Center (LACC) ahead of the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The LACC is set to host boxing, fencing, taekwondo and table tennis events during the Olympics. The expansion and modernisation project will seek to kickstart economic growth in the region, with the council stating that the work will bring in over $165m in visitor spending each year.

The project is also slated to create 7,445 new jobs during construction and 2,147 jobs on an ongoing basis. The council has approved a design-build delivery model that contracts with a joint venture of venue operator AEG and development firm The Plenary Group.

In the coming months, the city will work with AEG, Plenary, architect Populous, and general contractors PCL and Webcor to finalise design plans, schedule and costs with a view to starting construction next spring.

The project will connect the LACC’s two existing South and West Exhibit Halls by adding 190,000 square feet of space to create one continuous hall. It will also add 55,000 square feet of new meeting room space and 95,000 square feet of multi-purpose space.

The plans also include a redesign of Gilbert Lindsay Plaza, which will add public open space and become an “exciting” outdoor venue for event programming. The Los Angeles Times reported that the council will spend $54.4m (£42.7m/€50.4m) on pre-design work as part of the plans.

Doane Liu, chief tourism officer and executive director of the city tourism department, said: “Thank you to the City Council for their vision and leadership to invest in a public infrastructure project that is essential for LA’s future.

“Despite being in the second largest city in the United States, the LACC is currently a second-tier facility and we are losing out on business to other cities due to the constraints of the Convention Center. With this expansion, LACC will become a premier destination that is able to pursue larger events that bring visitors to LA who spend money at our local hotels, restaurants and attractions, adding additional revenue to the city’s General Fund.”

Kimberly Weedmark, general manager of the LACC, added: “Currently, the LACC hosts nearly 200 events and two million visitors annually. We’re excited that an upgraded facility will allow us to expand our event base with more top-tier programmes and allow our current clients continued growth opportunities.

“An expanded and modernised Center will provide our customers with innovative technology and demonstrate leadership in sustainability. We look forward to delivering excellent service and exceeding clients’ and guests’ expectations at every event.”

Last month, it was announced that swimming events at the LA 2028 Olympics will take place at SoFi Stadium, home of the NFL’s Los Angeles Rams and Chargers, as part of a revamped venue plan that is designed to deliver more than $150m of savings.