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Hickory Metro Convention Center will receive an expansion

The Hickory Convention Center is about to get a major renovation. The Hickory-Conover Tourism Development Authority, the Hickory and the Conover city councils approved the expansion Thursday.

The project will cost at least $14 million and will be paid for by room occupancy tax revenues. Hickory Mayor Hank Guess said that the expansion and renovation of the Hickory Metro Convention Center is a major economic development driver in the region.

“It’s a partnership that makes our region so strong and all of us working together is key to ensuring that our community continues to build on its solid foundation to ensure the future of our region continues to thrive,” Guess said.

Conover Mayor Kyle Hayman looks forward to the positive impact the rejuvenated center will have in Conover.

“The convention center brings guests to the community to attend a meeting or event, and the organization markets our region as a tourist destination as there are many attractions, including Rock Barn Country Club & Spa in Conover," Hayman said. "All these positive attributes combined will enhance Conover and Hickory and all the surrounding towns in our region.”

Hickory Construction Company will begin working with the design and Hickory Metro Convention Center teams on pre-construction activities. The center's 100,000-square-foot facility will be expanded to approximately 165,000 square feet and it is expected to be completed in 2024.

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Kenny is a Maryland native who began his career in media as a sportswriter at Tuskegee University, covering SIAC sports working for the athletic department and as a sports correspondent for the Tuskegee Campus Digest. Following his time at Tuskegee, he was accepted to the NASCAR Diversity Internship Program as a Marketing Intern for The NASCAR Foundation in Daytona Beach, Florida in 2017.