Sneak Peek Inside The Music City Center - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Sneak Peek Inside The Music City Center

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by Aundrea Cline-Thomas

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The Music City Center is the largest public project in Davidson County's history. On Wednesday Mayor Karl Dean wanted to show it off, all 1.2 million square feet, days before the public grand opening.

SLIDESHOW: Tour of Music City Center

In January 2010, a new convention center was just an idea to increase Nashville's appeal.

"We were leaving a lot of money on the table," Mayor Dean said about the revenue lost from the city not being able to accommodate large scale events. "We were not meeting our potential and this building allows us to do that."

Nashville is not just "Anytown USA." Close attention was paid to the details to reflect what the city has to offer.

From designing part of the building in the shape of a guitar, to putting country music memorabilia on display and featuring local artists.

"You stand here (and) you've got this great cultural institution; the Country Music Hall of Fame, you've got the Symphony and you're just two blocks away  from the honky tonks," Dean said about the location.

Visitors in the grand ballroom are supposed to feel like they're  inside of a guitar. Details Dean hopes are the perfect mix of practicality and unique appeal.

The average group booking the Music City Center is about 6,500 attendees, while the old convention center could only accommodate 1,500.

Nearly three and a half years and $585 million dollars later, supporters say the building is the best fit to move the city forward.

"When you put this together with what's going on at the Hall of Fame, you put it together with the originality of the building  this is …the best convention center I've seen in the United States," Dean said. "I'm biased but that's what I think."

The money to fund the project came from revenue generated from the hotel/motel tax and other visitors fees, not property taxes.

On Sunday, the Music City Center will officially open to the public. The public tours start at 2 p.m.

Email: acline-thomas@newschannel5.com
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