Rio Nuevo advances $4 million for next steps in TCC improvements

$4 million is going into new improvements
$4 million is going into new improvements(Rio Nuevo)
Updated: Feb. 26, 2020 at 6:38 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The Rio Nuevo Board approved the next steps in the much-anticipated Tucson Convention Center revitalization project, advancing more than $4 million in upgrades.

  • $3.4 million in renovations to existing meeting rooms, including the creation of a “board room” that will be a high-tech meeting area
  • $499,000 for the design of a 25,000-square-foot expansion that will add 18,000 square feet of meeting rooms adjacent to the exhibition hall. Construction is scheduled to begin after the 2021 Gem and Mineral Show.
  • $37,000 to retain an expert to evaluate the existing computer, communication and audio/visual systems and to recommend upgrades.
  • A $115,000 initial site development design package to evaluate the entire TCC grounds for code compliance and where necessary suggest upgrades to bring the grounds, including lighting, landscaping, walkways and accessibility features into code compliance.

Two other projects also are progressing and the Board anticipates updates at its March meeting.

75 E. Broadway – A new financial partnership is progressing for the multi-use project that will include two floors of retail, five to seven parking levels with about 500 parking spaces, five floors of office space and up to four floors of residential.

1 S. Church – Opwest Partners is expected to present an update on its $38 million plan to convert the lower portion of the 23-story tower into a hotel with about 150 rooms, meeting space, a restaurant and a fitness center. The top section would remain office space.

The Board unanimously approved a deal with the City of Tucson to acquire the rights to a roadway west and north of the TCC Music Hall in exchange for reducing the debt owed to the Rio Nuevo District. The deal is subject to an appraisal of the property and other conditions.

More information on these projects and downtown can be found at The creation of the Rio Nuevo Multipurpose Facilities District was approved by Tucson voters in 1999, along with an appointed Board, to invest state tax dollars in public and public/private projects to create a vibrant Tucson core. For every dollar the Board invests, the community reaps $10 of construction activity with projects like the AC Marriott Hotel, the Arena, Greyhound, the Mercado Annex, City Park, the Marist project and Caterpillar. For more information, visit

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