Greetings from the Orange County Convention Center! We are more than halfway through 2018 and it has been a year for the record books. In addition to hosting more events and welcoming our wonderful clientele, we're overjoyed to celebrate our 35th anniversary. In the last three decades we transformed from being a local civic center to one of the most sought after trade show and convention destinations. In this e-newsletter, you'll get the latest and greatest information from the Center of Hospitality!
JOHN ROBERTS, SUSTAINABILITY COORDINATOR
The Orange County Convention Center is pleased to announce we’ve hired a new Sustainability Coordinator.
John Roberts was hired earlier this summer with the mission of improving upon our existing environmentally-friendly practices and pushing us to be even better.
“I cannot wait to dig in and see what I can do to enhance the excellent work already done at the Center of Hospitality,” he said. “The OCCC has a stellar reputation for hosting green meetings, and I’m here to take the facility to the next level.”
John has a Bachelor’s degree in Biology with a concentration in Microbiology from Florida Gulf Coast University and a Master’s in Marine Biology from the University of North Carolina. Most recently, John served as an environmental specialist with the Florida Department of Health. A majority of his career has been working with organizations across the public, private and academic sectors to produce first-class research and determine best practices for many companies.
Effective January 1, 2019 the following parking rates will be in effect at the Orange County Convention Center (OCCC):
- Daily Rate for regular-sized vehicles: $17
- Oversized vehicles: $25
- Metered Parking Rates: $5 per hour, maximum 3 hour limit
For the convenience of exhibitors and attendees, the OCCC accepts cash and major credit cards as payment for parking.
Update on Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) Projects
Rendering of West Hall B Food Court
Example of West Concourse Meeting Room design
Rendering of Valencia Ballroom Pre-function space
FOOD SERVICE RENOVATIONS
We are in the planning stages to update and renovate our food service locations across campus. Construction will take place in phases and will improve locations with updated seating, beverage/condiment stations, coffee stations, and new ceiling, wall and floor interior finishes. Additionally, we'll revamp our food service infrastructure, giving us the high-tech and all-new systems we need to support your shows.
Aesthetically, the renovated spaces will be similar to our recently update Food Court C in the West Concourse.
The first location we will renovate is the West Hall A/B food court between February and November 2019. The food court location in West Hall E/F is scheduled to be renovated between December 2019 and March 2020.
MEETING ROOM RENOVATIONS
Our West Concourse meeting rooms will be renovated to include new flooring, life safety systems, ceilings, air walls and other high-end upgrades.
Renovations will take place in phases, working within openings in the event schedule. Renovations are expected to be complete by December 2022.
VALENCIA PRE-FUNCTION AREA
To best serve our clients, the Valencia Pre-function area is undergoing renovations to match the interior design and finishes of the Valencia Ballroom. Upgrades and renovations include ceiling finishes, lighting, speakers, painting and additional show power. Once complete, the area will be a dynamic and attractive location with new furniture, fixtures and plants.
WELLNESS ROOMS AND NETWORKING SPACES
The Orange County Convention Center’s Capital Improvement and Facility Operations teams are in the process of creating Wellness Rooms and Networking Spaces that will be strategically located around campus. These projects will result in the build-out of underutilized, existing spaces at the OCCC to repurpose them to meet client and attendee needs and demands.
A Wellness Room is defined as a dedicated, private space that can be used for nursing mothers, meditation, prayer and more. Each room will be outfitted with a chair and table, ensuring comfort when the space is in use. Additionally, the rooms ensure privacy with the use of a lock that notifies others if the room is occupied or unoccupied.
A Networking Space is a space, either an enclosed room or an open gathering space, which can be used for informal gatherings and meetings. These areas also provide basic charging and connectivity capabilities.
We expect these projects to be completed by summer 2019.
The Orange County Convention Center has installed new digital wayfinding technology, making it easier for show attendees to find their way around the country’s second-largest convention center.
So far, 16 kiosks have been installed around the Center of Hospitality, six in the North/South building and 10 in the West Concourse. “It’s enhancing the attendee experience,” said Yulita Osuba, our deputy director. “At any one time we can welcome upward of 70,000 people to our facility.”
This year’s installation of the wayfinding kiosks is the result of nearly two years of work. The systems are designed to be useful in two ways: by giving center guests an overall view of the campus before exploring it on foot and giving them detailed directions to where they want to go.
Each kiosk displays turn-by-turn directions on campus and to the connecting hotel properties. Additionally, those directions can be downloaded to the user’s cell phone. Using a QR code, the directions can be saved and referenced in real time as the guest walks to their destination.
Additionally, OCCC leaders want to make it easy for guests to navigate the center on the go. We’re in the process of developing a mobile app that will offer similar turn-by-turn directions through your phone. We expect to launch that in January.