Updated April 15, 2020 - 8:31 am
The push to complete the Las Vegas Convention Center expansion and the related underground people-mover by January is on despite massive cuts in the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority budget.
LVCVA President and CEO Steve Hill confirmed Tuesday that those two projects — key to expanding exhibition display space at the Convention Center when the meetings and convention industry eventually return from the coronavirus shutdown — are continuing despite budget cuts occurring on the horizon for the 2020-21 fiscal year.
The LVCVA board of directors trimmed $79 million from their current budget and anticipate reduced spending for the new fiscal year that begins July 1.
The $980.3 million West Hall expansion and the $52.5 million Boring Company underground people-mover projects are continuing as planned.
Work is continuing on the new West Hall project with 1,000 laborers on the site daily. The project is 77 percent complete and is due to open for the 2021 CES trade show in January. Hill said workers are observing all new coronavirus mitigation protocols for social distancing and hand-washing on the job. No cases have been reported on the job site.
Hill also said the second parallel tunnel for the mile-long people-mover is “making exceptionally good progress,” ahead of schedule and crews have begun excavating the underground station near the main entrance to the convention center as the second tunnel bore reaches that location.
But one of the capital project casualties of the virus shutdown will be the planned two-year $540 million renovation of four existing exhibition halls that was scheduled to begin as soon as the West Hall opened. Hill said that project may not be reconsidered for at least two years.
With the renovation project on hold, the plan to move the LVCVA’s executive offices to an office on Convention Center Drive has been put off.
On Tuesday, the board approved a $1.4 million addendum to Cox Nevada Telecom LLC’s telecommunications license to interconnect all lighting, heating and air conditioning, digital signage, safety, security and administrative operations for the West Hall.
The board also approved a $5.4 million contract with Samsung SDS from among 17 bidders to become the expansion’s interactive digital media technology provider.