Located Along the mighty Mississippi River, within walking distance of the French Quarter, fine dining, attractions and 20,000 first-class hotel rooms, The New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center (MCCNO), the nation’s sixth largest convention center, is the engine that drives the Crescent City’s hospitality industry. Together with New Orleans’ popular destination appeal, the MCCNO’s spaciousness, service and flexibility has enabled the facility to consistently rank in the top 10 for hosting the most national conventions and tradeshows annually since its 1985 opening.
The New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center was designed to capitalize on the spiraling pace of the exposition market in the Crescent City, and in doing so, bolster the booming local tourism/hospitality industry. Its conceptual development began in 1978 when the New Orleans Exhibition Hall Authority, the governing body of the proposed convention center, was formed to bring about construction of the facility. The Authority’s exclusive mission is to spur economic development by hosting tradeshows and conventions that attract out-of-state visitors to the area. The Convention Center is managed by New Orleans Public Facility Management Inc., a not-for-profit organization operating under the auspices of the Ernest N. Morial New Orleans Exhibition Hall Authority (Authority), a political subdivision of the state of Louisiana.
The MCCNO’s riverfront location and brisk business also helped spur the Warehouse Arts District’s revitalization—dramatically transforming it from unoccupied warehouses to one flourishing with fine dining establishments, hotels, art galleries, commercial and residential development.
Since opening in 1985, the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center has captured a sizable share of the convention market nationwide with its operations impacting every segment of the local hospitality/tourism market – including hotel bookings, dining, transportation, shopping, entertainment, local tours and cruises. As of 2009, the Convention Center supported 23,989 jobs throughout the New Orleans area.
Originally called the New Orleans Convention Center (later renamed the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in 1992 for the late New Orleans mayor who championed its construction), MCCNO event activity has attracted more than 12 million out-of-state visitors, generating a statewide economic impact of $48.1 billion from 1985-2009.