New head of 'Destination Toledo' hopes to bring more conventions to town

New head of 'Destination Toledo' hopes to bring more conventions to town

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Big changes could be coming to the 31-year-old Seagate Convention Centre in Downtown Toledo.

It's  all an effort to attract something lacking there: conventions.

Carla Nowak, the new head of Destination Toledo, hopes to be part of a team to make that happen.

"What we need to do is figure out a way to attract more people to come here and spend the night," said Nowak.

She said it's important to tap into the core base of Toledo's business community by relying on their professional contacts and resources.

"There's great opportunities with entities already here. To bring in some of the shows and events and conferences they travel to bring them back to the region," Nowak explained.

But first, changes need to be made to the aging centre itself, changes. Nowak said it could cost anywhere from $30 to 40 million.

The decades old building need a major facelift if it want to bring in conventioneers like the thousands who attend the Weak Signals event every spring.

The biggest project addition would be a ballroom on the Summit Street side of the building. It would compliment the new Hilton Gardens Hotel going in next door.

"We would ideally want to have a ballroom to hold 1000-1200 people. That's a good number for us. Can imagine how many hotel rooms would come along with that sort of size" added Nowak.  Another potential change is moving the centre's main entrance to Monroe Street facing Fifth Third Field.

All this is dependent on funding. Money could come from the state or a private entity.

Everything is still in the discussion stage, a discussion with a goal to bring more "out of towners" to Toledo.

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