Augusta Convention Center

Long-delayed plans for the Augusta Convention Center, a proposal to build a large convention space near the Mariott Hotel in downtown Augusta, were put into action by a vote of the Augusta Commission on December 7, 2009, and ground was broken on June 16, 2010. Completion and the grand opening were delayed from a projected January 1, 2012 opening due to disputes over the operating contract and other concerns, and the facility hosted its grand opening on February 28, 2013.

 

Plans were delayed for years after an analysis revealed $20 million in initial funding put in place through a SPLOST program was not nearly enough to fund the true cost of construction of the facility. Added costs, including a dramatic increase in expected construction costs, a parking garage and funding for an inner-city revitalization program designed to boost support for the project, drove the total price tag to nearly $100 million.

 

A debate regarding the name Augusta Convention Center vs. TEE Center (for Trade, Exhibition, and Events Center) is ongoing. Marriott and convention officials favor Augusta Convention Center for its clarity, while marketing officials prefer TEE Center because it connects to Augusta's golfing heritage. 

 

Controversies over future operations subsidies, an alleged vote-buying scheme involving future jobs at the parking facility and concerns over the need for such a facility in Augusta also delayed the final approval of the project.

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All articles about Augusta Convention Center

Tax incentives could help downtown hotel project

Downtown Development Authority Executive Director Margaret Woodard said she's working to create a tax allocation district for a proposed Hyatt hotel site. A developer and investor visited Augusta ...
By Meg Mirshak | Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Augusta convention center opens

Area leaders celebrated the grand opening of Augusta's newest attraction - a riverfront convention center in the heart of downtown Augusta - as a transformative moment for the city Thursday.
By Susan McCord | Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013

Convention Center opens Thursday

A dozen years in the making, the Augusta Convention Center officially opens its doors Thursday with 20 events scheduled in the center's 38,000-square-foot open meeting hall.
By Susan McCord | Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2013

First event at Augusta Convention Center on Sunday

A Sunday bridal expo will be the first public event held at the Augusta Convention Center.
By Susan McCord | Friday, Feb. 22, 2013

EMS issue will go to commission

A push to put Augusta's ambulance service out for bids will go before the full commission after the matter received too few votes to pass in a committee meeting Monday.
By Susan McCord | Monday, Jan. 28, 2013

Convention center pedestrian bridge stalled

Augusta is no closer to having a pedestrian bridge across Reynolds Street downtown after a motion to deny funding the bridge failed 4-4 Tuesday.
By Susan McCord | Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2013

Committee to consider pedestrian bridge

A pedestrian bridge connecting Augusta's new convention center to its parking garage across Rey­nolds Street returns for consideration by an Augusta Com­mis­sion committee Monday.
By Susan McCord | Sunday, Jan. 6, 2013

Convention center takes shape

The Augusta Commission approved a shortened management agreement for the center Nov. 8, with commissioners Alvin Mason, Bill Lockett and J.R. Hatney opposed. By then, however, delays had cost the ...
By Susan McCord | Sunday, Dec. 30, 2012

Convention center nearing completion

The Augusta Convention Center, also known as the TEE Center, is very near completion, with workers performing detail work around the 38,000-square-foot meeting space Friday.
By Susan McCord | Friday, Nov. 9, 2012

Management agreement reached on convention center

The Augusta Commission voted 6-3 on Thursday to approve a management agreement with Marriott operator Augusta Riverfront LLC to run the new Augusta Convention Center.
By Susan McCord | Thursday, Nov. 8, 2012

Convention center back on agenda

Augusta commissioners may again weigh in on the management agreements for the Augusta Convention Center at a Thursday meeting.
By Susan McCord | Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012

Future of convention center still up in air

Forgotten costs and unforeseen complexity continue to delay the opening of Augusta's new convention center, the 38,000-square-foot exhibit hall approved by voters in 2005.
By Susan McCord | Sunday, Nov. 4, 2012

Mayor tired of public fighting over convention center

Mayor Deke Copenhaver called off a work session about the Augusta Convention Center and said city officials "are now in damage-control mode" after the cancellation of two events.
By Susan McCord | Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2012

2 conventions canceled because of center dispute

The Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police has canceled two conventions scheduled at Augusta Convention Center because of city officials' inability to agree on operating details.
By Susan McCord | Monday, Oct. 29, 2012

Commission to revisit convention center management

With the threat of canceled conventions looming, the Augusta Commission will again take up management agreements for the Augusta Convention Center at a meeting Monday.
By Susan McCord | Sunday, Oct. 28, 2012

Mayor warns of larger losses at convention center

Critics, including several commissioners, have taken issue with numerous details included in proposed operating agreements between the city and Augusta Riverfront LLC.  
By Susan McCord | Friday, Oct. 26, 2012

Pedestrian bridge hearing Thursday

The city's historic preservation commission will consider granting a certificate of appropriateness for a pedestrian bridge connecting Augusta Convention Center to a new parking garage across ...
Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2012

Commission fails to approve operating plan

Management of the Augusta Convention Center remained up in the air Monday after city commissioners declined to approve either of two motions to approve a set of operating documents.
By Susan McCord | Monday, Oct. 22, 2012

Commission to reconsider center documents

In a final meeting before Nov. 6 elections, Augusta commissioners will reconsider approving operating agreements for Augusta Convention Center, which is complete but awaits their approval.
By Susan McCord | Sunday, Oct. 21, 2012

District 1 candidates debate

Small businesses, crime, unity, blight and even a greenway for low-speed vehicles were debated Wednesday by four candidates for the District 1 Augusta Commission seat.
By Susan McCord | Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2012

Top headlines

Democrats target turnout for Sunday voting

Registered voters in Augusta-Richmond County can cast ballots in the Nov. 4 election from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday in the Advance Voting Center at Augusta Municipal Building, 530 Greene St.
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