The Real Deal New York

Queens convention center may not be a great idea

January 26, 2012 12:30PM

While Governor Andrew Cuomo’s proposal to build a massive convention center in Ozone Park, Queens near the Aqueduct racino has met with much local approval, one academic who specializes in the economics of large event spaces said the project won’t be making any money, the New York Daily News reported.

“City after city builds and expands a convention center,” Heywood Sanders, a professor at University of Texas, San Antonio, said. “Yet they end up doing less business than they did 20 or 30 years ago.”

McCormick Place, a convention center in Chicago that is the nation’s largest events hub, lost a million visitors from 2001 to 2010, the News pointed out. McCormick Place expanded in 2007.

“This is an enormously competitive market with a very uncertain future,” Sanders said. [NYDN]