Portland Expo Center voted No. 1 mid-sized convention & event center in the United States

 Portland, Ore. -

The Portland Expo Center was voted the No. 1 mid-sized convention and event center in the United States by the February issue of Trade Show Executive magazine, one of the most widely read trade publications in the event and convention industry space. The Expo Center ranked ahead of such larger market venues as Moscone West in San Francisco, Austin Convention Center in Texas, and the South Towne Exposition Center in Utah.

Rankings made by TSE were based primarily on prime exhibit space. The Expo Center showcases 333,000 square feet of space – the most of the 70 “Tier III” venues listed in the United States (124,000-349,000 square feet). The Expo Center’s 333,000 square feet was enough
to beat out CenturyLink Field Event Center in Seattle, which has 330,000 square feet of space of prime space.

“I’m very pleased to see us recognized by Trade Show Executive,” says Expo Center director Matthew Rotchford. “The article captures the importance of the variety of the mid-sized facilities landscape in North America and the important role we play in the exhibit world. To see us at the top of this list is fantastic. ”

The rankings are important because mid-sized centers comprise 81 of the 307 convention and event centers followed by the TSE. The magazine also reports these centers comprise 26 percent – or 16,559,313 square feet – of all available prime exhibit space in the United States, Mexico and Canada.

Beyond space, mid-sized centers are crucial to the ecology of the event center business, the magazine says. They are known within the industry for being able to accommodate moderate sized trade shows, conventions and events that may be to small for major venues (Tier 1 or Tier 2) or too big for smaller ones.  Mid-sized spaces not only support regional consumer shows and events but also have the reputation for availability for promoters requiring space on short notice as compared to other spaces.   The economic impact of these facilities, and particularly the Portland Expo Center, are well documented.  For every $1 the Expo spends, the region sees a return of over $6.34 in direct and indirect regional spending. 

Mid-sized centers in North America average about 200,000 square feet of prime space. The venues listed in the rankings range in square footage from the Expo Center’s 333,000, to 125,000 for The Concourse Exhibition Center in San Francisco.  In between those two rankings are such locations as the No. 4 ranked Baltimore Convention Center with 300,000 square feet of space, No. 18 ranked Cleveland Convention Center with 225,000 square feet of space, and the No. 48 ranked Alamodome in San Antonio with 160,000 square feet.  A link to the TSE article can be found here: www.tradeshowexecutive.com.

In the coming weeks, the Portland Expo Center will host the 50th Annual Portland Swap Meet (which utilizes all of the Expo’s 53 acre campus), the Northwest Pet & Companion Fair, the performance extravaganza “Totem” by Cirque du Soleil, and the Northwest Fire & Rescue Expo.

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Thursday, March 27, 2014