Raleigh to negotiate with Omni Hotel and Resorts to expand convention center


North Carolina Construction News staff writer

Raleigh city council has directed staff to negotiate with Omni Hotels and Resorts to develop the highly-anticipated convention hotel in the downtown core. The new hotel will be built on a one-acre lot across from the Raleigh Convention Center and Martin Marietta Center for the Performing Arts at the end of Fayetteville Street.

The Omni Raleigh Hotel is expected to include 550 guest rooms and 55,000 sq. ft. of meeting space along with several food and beverage outlets, a rooftop pool, a spa, and a fitness center.

Construction could be complete in the next four years.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for the City of Raleigh and Wake County. We’ve been envisioning a new convention center hotel downtown for years. We are now one step closer to making it happen,” said Raleigh Mayor Mary-Ann Baldwin. “This opens up endless possibilities for more conferences, more conventions, and more events at the Raleigh Convention Center. And the economic benefits cannot be underestimated.”

Once the terms are negotiated, this will be brought back to the City Council for final approval at a later meeting, and the hotel could open in 2027.

The expansion will allow the city to attract larger events. It will include:

  • 500,000 square feet of meeting space, including some 30 additional breakout rooms;
  • 50,000 square feet and an additional 30,000 square feet of flex halls for hosting large events or for breaking up into smaller areas
  • additional capacity for 20,000 people (doubling the current RCC capacity)

Since opening in 2008, the Raleigh Convention Center has welcomed over 1.8 million people and the expansion is expected to have a ripple effect throughout the broader Wake County area.

“Expansion of the Raleigh Convention Center, as well as the hotel, will considerably increase the opportunities to recruit and secure larger city-wide meetings, conventions, and sports groups to Wake County that are currently out of reach with our current infrastructure. We look forward to working with the city to move the project forward,” said Dennis Edwards, president and CEO of Visit Raleigh.


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