The Calgary Stampede and development partner Calgary Municipal Land Corporation (CMLC) have unveiled the design for the expansion of the BMO Convention Centre.
Last year, the Calgary Stampede and CMLC carried out a rigorous competitive process to select the internationally recognized design team now leading this transformation—Stantec, Populous and S2 Architecture. The design team has spent the past 12 months crafting a world-class design that’ll enable Calgary to compete with major convention destinations.
“Calgary’s citizens are world-renowned for their community spirit and their drive to achieve great things,” says Dana Peers, president and chairman of the Calgary Stampede board. “When complete in 2024, the expanded BMO Centre will provide Calgary and southern Alberta a significant platform for economic diversification through growth in both the convention and tourism industries.”
The facility features more than one million square feet of total floor space, including 350,000 square feet of contiguous exhibit space, and more than double its current rentable area. The interior spaces will be ample and adaptable; meeting rooms will be wired for instant connectivity; flexible breakout areas will facilitate; and outdoor spaces.
“Community spirit, culture, heritage, innovation – how can you incorporate those very different elements into the design of a building that is going to anchor transformation in a district, and a city? It wasn’t an easy task, but I am confident we’ve achieved it with the BMO Centre in Calgary, Alberta,” says the project’s lead-architect Léo Lejeune of Stantec.
According to Calgary Stampede CEO, Warren Connell, the BMO Centre will be the largest conference facility in western Canada (and the country’s second largest after Toronto’s)
The BMO Centre expansion is also significant for being a keystone project set to catalyze the transformation of east Victoria Park into Calgary’s Culture & Entertainment District.
“This project defines an incredibly important phase in realizing the Calgary Stampede’s and CMLC’s long-term vision for east Victoria Park and Stampede Park,” says Kate Thompson, CMLC president and CEO. “An expanded BMO Centre will bring new energy, talent and revenue into our city while adding another world-class attraction to the area.”
The development permit has been submitted and construction of Hall F (100,000 SF of additional space) is on track for completion later this month. Crews will begin demolishing existing structures in the fall and break ground on the new building next year. The project is scheduled to complete in June 2024.