Weekly News & Insights: When Shows Grow, Cities Innovate

Photo: Las Vegas News Bureau

Photo: Las Vegas News Bureau

It’s no secret that many trade shows have been breaking records over the past year — we’ve reported on many of those here. And much of that growth has been happening in two of the major trade show hubs: Chicago and Las Vegas. Now both of those cities are looking at their options to keep up with that growth.

This week, the Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority (LVCVA) announced a massive $2.5-billion plan to improve the convention center district over the next decade. The first phase of this new Las Vegas Global Business District will take place over the next couple of years and includes a $150 million renovation and expansion of the existing Las Vegas Convention Center (LVCC). Future phases will include the development of a World Trade Center facility and a centralized transportation hub that connects the LVCC to other convention centers and hotels on the Las Vegas Strip.

Last week, plans were announced to build a new 1,200-room hotel adjacent to McCormick Place in Chicago, but that plan has already hit some major snags. It seems the land owner has been planning to develop a massive data center on that spot. If an agreement cannot be reached, it’s possible that the city might have to use eminent domain to acquire the land.

And speaking of growth … entries for EXPO’s Fast-Growth Shows List are due March 8. The winners will be honored for their innovation as well as their accelerated growth, and will be featured in the May/June issue of EXPO Magazine as well as celebrated at an awards luncheon in Baltimore in June.

In show news:


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With experiences as both an exhibitor and a show organizer, Marlys Arnold has a unique perspective on trade show exhibiting. As an exhibit marketing strategist, she travels the country consulting and training on how to create experiential exhibits that produce significantly higher numbers of qualified leads. She’s led workshops for events ranging from local consumer expos to some of the largest trade shows in the U.S. She hosts the Trade Show Insights blog/podcast, and is the author of Build a Better Trade Show Image, the Exhibitor Education Manifesto, and the ExhibitorEd Success System. Exhibit Design That Works (the first book in the YES: Your Exhibit Success series) debuted in July 2017. She’s also the founder of the Exhibit Marketers Café, an online education community.

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