Portland’s Oregon Convention Center Completes Momentous $40 Million Renovation

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Oregon Convention Center celebrates the completion of an ambitious remodel project — the venue’s first large-scale renovation in over 30 years

Renovated OCC Exterior and Awning

“OCC is Oregon’s premier convention center, and so we made sure to keep our local community and setting top-of-mind throughout the planning and implementation process of this project. Subsequently, we concentrated on aspects that are unique to Oregon,” says Craig Stroud, OCC Executive Director.

Today, Oregon Convention Center (OCC) announces the completion of a momentous $40 million renovation project — OCC’s first large-scale renovation since the venue was built 30 years ago. The ambitious remodel, which was completed during OCC’s busiest year-to-date, includes updates to numerous public spaces throughout the venue in order to improve accessibility for event attendees, provide more flexible and transformable space options and elevate design aspects. The renovation project scope included creating a plaza area to provide a flexible outdoor space option for events, which will also serve as a community space for locals, staff and event attendees alike. In order to integrate creative design aspects throughout the venue, OCC drew inspiration from the beauty of Oregon’s natural landscape, with unique design touches such as lichen-inspired carpets and forest canopy ceilings.

“OCC is Oregon’s premier convention center, and so we made sure to keep our local community and setting top-of-mind throughout the planning and implementation process of this project. Subsequently, we concentrated on aspects that are important and unique to Oregon,” says Craig Stroud, OCC Executive Director. “I think the results of this focus are evident, both in the impact and originality of the Pacific Northwest-inspired design elements, but also in the level of care that was taken to improve the accessibility, sustainability and flexibility aspects and capabilities we offer our guests, building-wide.”

Coinciding with the upcoming December 2020 opening of the Hyatt Regency Portland at the Oregon Convention Center, which was built directly adjacent to OCC and offers 600 guest rooms, OCC’s newly-renovated space serves to invigorate Portland’s national competitiveness as a top destination for meetings and conventions. The combination of OCC’s renovation with the convention hotel opening provides a new, gleaming meetings and conventions product for Portland that can accommodate groups of all shapes and sizes. OCC’s renovation project also serves to enhance the surrounding Lloyd neighborhood.

“When we began planning this comprehensive renovation project, all the way back in 2013, we saw a need for Portland to level up its meetings and convention offerings,” says Scott Cruickshank, General Manager of Visitor Venues for Metro and former OCC Executive Director. “This renovation has done that and more. Portland now has a top-tier conventions venue, paired with a sizeable convention hotel, that has national and international appeal.” Cruickshank adds, “Many community organizations, firms and stakeholders have been involved in this project over the years, and so its completion is also exciting to the local residents and partners that were instrumental to this large-scale project.”

OCC worked with multiple local Pacific Northwest firms for the renovation, which was completed on-time and on-budget. The convention center partnered with Colas Construction as the general contractor for the project. Colas Construction’s relationships were instrumental in bringing skilled Certification Office for Business Inclusion and Diversity (COBID)-certified subcontractors to the remodel, resulting in 51% of the project contractors being COBID-certified firms and 35% of the total hours worked conducted by minorities. The renovations were designed by Seattle-based LMN Architects, Merryman Barnes Architects were tapped as the associate architect firm and Mayer/Reed acted as the landscape architectural firm and environmental graphics designer. Glumac was brought on as the MEP engineer, Seattle-based Magnusson Klemencic Associates was the structural engineer, and KPFF was the civil engineering firm.

Guests are welcome to come experience OCC’s renovated space. OCC holds over 500 events and welcomes over 600,000 guests annually. An updated OCC event schedule can be found at oregoncc.org.


About the Oregon Convention Center:
Oregon Convention Center is the largest convention center in the Pacific Northwest with 255,000 square feet of contiguous exhibit space, two grand ballrooms, 52 individual meeting rooms, superior catering and concession offerings, and a full-time staff of over 120 professionals, making it the perfect venue to service events from 10 to 10,000 attendees.

OCC became the first LEED-EB certified convention center in 2004, and then achieved LEED-EB Silver in 2008 and LEED Platinum in 2014. The facility has also been Salmon-Safe certified since 2007 from Salmon-Safe, a clean water advocacy nonprofit, for its innovative rain garden, responsible stormwater management efforts and integrated pest management policy.

Totaling one million square feet of space, OCC hosts an average of 500 events and welcomes over 600,000 guests annually. In FY 2018, OCC generated $528.4 million in economic impact for the metropolitan region, supported 4,940 jobs and generated more than $20.6 million in state and local tax revenues.

OCC is owned and operated by Metro and managed through the Metropolitan Exposition and Recreation Commission. Metro, the regional government, crosses city limits and county lines to build a resilient economy, keep nature close by and respond to a changing climate. Representing a diverse population of 1.8 million people in 25 cities and three counties, Metro’s directly elected council gives voters a voice in decision about how the region grows and communities prosper. Visit http://www.oregoncc.org for more information.


Becca Wirta
Oregon Convention Center
O: 503-228-4118
C: 503-972-8821

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Becca Wirta
since: 02/2009
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