Indiana's Convention Center Expansion and Milwaukee's Historic Hotel Renovation
The Pfister Hotel Imperial Ballroom
On August 1, Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett and Leonard Hoops, president and CEO of Visit Indy, led community leaders, project representatives and some of Indianapolis’ biggest convention clients in a ground-breaking ceremony officially beginning the sixth expansion of the Indiana Convention Center (ICC) and construction of a new convention hotel.
Scheduled for completion in summer 2026, the ICC expansion is set to house one of the top 10 convention center ballrooms by size in the U.S., with the additional event space necessary to host two citywide conventions simultaneously. The new 143,500-square-foot ICC expansion will be connected to the existing convention center via a skywalk over Capitol Avenue.
In addition to new convention space, Indiana’s capital city also began construction on a 40-story, 800-room Signia by Hilton hotel on the site. The new convention hotel will become the tallest hotel in Indianapolis and completely transform the city’s southwest skyline. The hotel’s completion, slated for the same summer, will bring the total number of hotel rooms connected via climate-controlled skywalks in Indianapolis to more than 5,500.
Galaxy Hotels Group, the Frisco, Texas-based hotel management company, announced the newly branded Radisson Hotel Cedar Rapids will continue to welcome guests during the full-service hotel’s extensive conversion and renovation.
Radisson Hotel Cedar Rapids is the first hotel conversion in the Radisson brand since Radisson Hotels Americas was acquired by Choice Hotels International in 2022. The rebranded hotel is housed in the former Marriott Cedar Rapids building at 1200 Collins Road NE and minutes away from downtown Cedar Rapids.
The seven-story, atrium-style hotel offers 220 guest rooms and nearly 26,000 square feet of meeting and event space, as well as onsite dining at The Cedar Grille restaurant and adjacent lounge. Radisson Hotel Cedar Rapids’ Grand Ballroom can accommodate up to 1,000 guests.
Downtown Davenport, Iowa’s historic Capitol Theatre, housed within the iconic Kahl Building, held its official ribbon-cutting ceremony on July 12. The 100-plus-year-old theater once boasted a grand piano and organ in its alcoves and famously hosted Buddy Holly’s last tour five days before his death.
Since the Capitol Theatre first opened its doors on Christmas Day in 1920, it has been used for a century’s worth of concerts, ballet recitals, theater productions and as a Christian Center. The theater—and the 10-story building it calls home—has been undergoing a $24 million renovation for the past five years to be restored to its former glory.
The Capitol Theatre retained its original look, including the hand-painted murals on the ceiling, and will host its first concert since 2010, headlined by Dayseeker, on Wednesday, September 13. The 1,500-seat theater is available to rent for private events.
Milwaukee’s historic AAA Four-Diamond The Pfister Hotel, which is celebrating its 130th anniversary this year and owned and managed by Marcus Hotels & Resorts, announced an extensive, state-of-the-art, multi-phase renovation in June.
The nearly $20 million project will feature a full revitalization of the hotel’s ballrooms and meeting spaces, followed by all-new guest rooms in the hotel’s historic tower. The renovation will conclude with enhancements to the hotel’s lobby, lobby bar and Café at the Pfister, expected to be completed by spring 2024.
The first phase of the renovation began on The Pfister Hotel’s seventh floor and redesigned the Imperial Ballroom, which hosted its first event post-renovation at the end of July and has a capacity of 350 standing. The Grand Ballroom and the Hall of Presidents, two additional venues at the hotel, are scheduled to follow soon, with the redesign focusing on incorporating elements of the hotel’s storied past into its present and future.
Completion of the hotel’s seventh-floor meeting space renovations in early fall 2023 will lead directly to extensive renovations of guest rooms in the hotel’s historic tower including custom-designed carpet, new furnishings, updated window treatments and entirely new bathrooms with updated lighting fixtures, tile showers, mirrors and more.