The Ramada Oasis Hotel & Convention Center announced it will soon begin construction of about 13,000 additional square feet to its convention center.

“The project will consist of adding three meeting/banquet rooms that will each accommodate 150-250 guests, a new airwall system that will allow the three meeting rooms to open into the present convention center, creating space that will accommodate up to 1,300 guests for banquet events and up to 1,800 guests for meetings,” said general manager Missy Handyside. “There will also be a new convention center lobby that will attach with an enclosed walkway to the Ramada Oasis Hotel and Fire & Ice Restaurant & Bar.”

The current convention center will be completely renovated and will offer a tropical contemporary décor with state-of-the-art audio/visual.

“It will be absolutely gorgeous and offer everything a meeting or group planner expects in a first-class facility,” Handyside said.

The decision to add additional meeting/convention space is due to the demand of the current client base as well as the many requests from meeting/convention/group planners that have expressed interest in booking events with the Ramada but needed additional and more versatile space.

Tracy Kimberlin, president of the Springfield Convention & Visitors Bureau, said he’s pleased the city is getting additional meeting space.

"This is great news in light of the fact that Springfield has limited meeting space for larger groups,” Kimberlin said. “Springfield is facing stiff competition from other cities that are building or have recently built convention centers. This will allow us to host more than one large group simultaneously.”

Robert Low, owner of the Ramada Oasis Hotel & Convention Center selected Slone Architects to design the project and Killian Construction to construct it. Brenda Van Eps with Studio V Design is the lead interior designer on the project.  The project completion date is scheduled for May 2012. Handyside confirmed they already have groups contracted in the convention center beginning in June 2012.

Groundbreaking is scheduled for October.