CACI president says city hiding real cost of new convention center
May be closer to $400 MILLION than $193 MILLION quoted to public


   As usual, the Virginian-Pilot told only a part of the story about the convention center in the editorial on Tuesday, June 24, 2003. Nor has our Virginia Beach City Council yet told us the full cost of the convention center.

   The new convention center in Virginia Beach will cost many millions more than the oft-touted $193 million.  Because the Pavilion will be demolished, council will build a new theater costing at least $50 million.  Then add about $20 million to beautify 19th Street into a corridor connecting the new convention center to the oceanfront. How much for the talked about retail/entertainment center at the old dome site? Another $50 million?  Now add in all the interest to pay for the bonds to fund all the projects.  Suddenly, the $193 million convention center looks more like at least a $350 to $400 million convention center. 

Robert D. O’Connor