The City of Dallas is looking to hire a project manager to lead the construction of a new convention center downtown that will cost about $3 billion.
A request for qualifications for the position was posted by the City on Thursday.
In November, Dallas voters approved a 2% hotel occupancy tax to fund the construction of a new Kay Bailey Hutchinson Convention Center — a project connected to other in-consideration downtown developments, including a new deck park over Interstate 30.
The City’s search for a project manager is one of the first considerable steps forward this project has seen since November.
Mayor Eric Johnson has called the project the “most consequential City of Dallas-led project in decades” and said it is “absolutely critical” for the City to do it properly.
On February 24, Johnson sent a memo to City Manager T.C. Broadnax detailing his creation of the Mayor’s Working Group on Downtown Revitalization — a body that advises city staff on the convention center project along with other projects related to downtown development.
“The decisions that are made as we redevelop this portion of Downtown Dallas in the years ahead will reverberate for generations to come,” Johnson wrote in the memo obtained by The Dallas Express.
He recommended to Broadnax that his staff meet with the working group at least once a month to seek their input.
The inaugural members of the group include Downtown Dallas CEO Jennifer Scripps, City of Dallas Economic Development Corporation Chairman John Stephens, and Vana Hammond Parham, senior legal counsel to AT&T.
Last month, city staff delivered a master plan for the project to the City Council, as previously covered by The Dallas Express. A point of contention during the presentation was the growing cost of the project.
The presentation noted that further analysis was needed to determine the “overall level of investment given persistent inflation.”
The total cost of this project has been estimated at over $3 billion. This cost includes demolishing the current structure ($26 million), constructing a new building ($2.9 billion), and implementing project management ($36 million).
Construction on the new convention center is expected to finish in 2028.
The Dallas Express reached out to the City for additional information on its search for a project manager but did not receive an answer back by the time of publication.
Conventions are dead in the “post-pandemic” world and no one in their right mind would come to crime-infested Dallas, Texas. Thank you John Cruezot.