City Council approves second phase of convention center expansion

State-of-the-art auditorium will be added

Ocean City, MD – The Ocean City Mayor and Council have unanimously approved proceeding with phase two of the expansion of the Roland E. Powell Convention Center, which will include a state-of-the-art auditorium. The vote followed a public hearing on the proposal held at the Monday, November 7 meeting of the Mayor and Council.

The 1,200-seat auditorium will replace the convention center’s existing stage, the original first floor exhibit hall and a portion of the second floor ballroom. It will include two tiers of fixed seating, dressing rooms, concession area and box office. State-of-the-art stage equipment will allow greater flexibility in the type of performing arts that can be featured in the auditorium.

Estimated cost is $14 million. The council included in its vote to proceed with the project to continue the town’s partnership with the Maryland Stadium Authority and request that the authority fund 25 percent of the construction. Ocean City’s portion would be covered with the existing half cent food tax.

Prior to the public hearing, the public was invited to the convention center to learn more about how the project could be added to the existing floor plan. The tour also provided an opportunity for citizens to see the first phase of the 32,000 sq. ft. expansion now underway, which will include a new lower exhibit hall and a new bayfront ballroom view when completed.