Convention Center Board Authorizes Funding To Begin Roof Replacement Project, Sets Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP)


NEW ORLEANS — The Ernest N. Morial New Orleans Exhibition Hall Authority (NOEHA) today took action authorizing nearly $37M in funding for the repair and replacement of the 41-acre roof of the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. This allows work to move forward on the first major improvement of the physical building itself under the approved $557M capital improvement plan. The roof replacement is the first major element of work under the Construction Manager at Risk process (“CMAR”).

“This is a major milestone for the Convention Center and for the future of our facility,” said Convention Center President, Michael J. Sawaya. “Replacing the roof is a critical first step towards upgrading our building and enhancing the experience we offer our clients, exhibitors and guests. We are glad to be moving the process forward on schedule.”

With today’s action, the Authority brought forward the negotiated Guaranteed Maximum Price (“GMP”) for the roof project, amending the CMAR contract. Construction is anticipated to begin as early as March of this year, and to be completed in approximately 12-14 months.

The process for replacing the roof will be much like that used for the Caesar’s Superdome, which will reduce the number of days events might be interrupted. The oldest section of the roof is nearly 40 years old, the newest vintage 1999 — none of which has been replaced previously. With the roof protecting literally millions of dollars’ worth of exhibits at any given time this news, and the future renovations of the interior, will be celebrated by existing and new users of the Convention Center.

The Convention Center roof measures over 1.9M square feet, making it one of the largest roofs in the city. It diverts more than 90% of rainwater that falls on it directly into the Mississippi River, reducing strain on New Orleans’ drainage system. The new roof system is designed to better reflect heat, and added insulation will contribute to increased energy savings — both of which are goals in keeping with the Convention Center’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification status.


About the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center (NOENMCC)

New Orleans is Built to Host! With 1.1 million square feet of prime exhibit space on one level, all under one roof, NOENMCC is the sixth largest Convention Center in the United States and provides the largest single exhibit space in the country. Our recent LEED Gold certification makes NOENMCC the largest LEED-certified project in Louisiana and the largest convention center project in the U.S. certified under LEED v4.1 Operations and Maintenance, as well as the first convention center in the world to be awarded initial certification under LEED Gold v4.1 O+MA. A leading contributor to the city’s robust tourism economy, NOENMCC event activity has produced $90.1 billion in economic impact since its 1985 opening.


About the Ernest N. Morial New Orleans Exhibition Hall Authority

The Ernest N. Morial New Orleans Exhibition Hall Authority’s (Authority) exclusive mission is to finance, construct and operate facilities in order to attract and conduct conventions, trade shows and other events that support and expand the economy of both the State of Louisiana and New Orleans Region. The Authority is composed of a 13-member board of commissioners, ten appointed by the Governor of Louisiana, and three appointed by the Mayor of New Orleans. Since 1985, event activity at the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center has produced $90.1 billion in economic impact since its 1985 opening, including $5.7 billion in new tax revenue for state and local governments.