Work is underway to expand the Yakima Convention Center. John Cooper President and CEO of Yakima Valley Tourism says an 18,000 square foot expansion is planned. City officials recently met with area architects before the bidding process begins to perform the work. The $12.5 million expansion is being funded through the city hotel tax which means when people visit the city of Yakima they help fund the work.

Cooper says the expansion will help draw larger conventions to the center. Currently more than 100,000 people attend meetings and conventions every year making a big economic impact on the valley. Cooper says they want to expand that impact.
The expansion is planned for the north side of the center. It's been 16 years since the Yakima Convention Center was expanded for future growth.