Your San Diego Convention Center

Your San Diego Convention Center's 30th Anniversary History

Your San Diego Convention Center first opened its doors on November 24, 1989. For 30 years, it has been the premier gathering place. Our purpose is to host meetings, conventions, trade shows and events to create economic benefits for the region. We benefit the local economy by reducing the burden on local taxpayers by generating hotel room and sales tax revenues which are used by the City of San Diego to fund necessary services like police, fire, street maintenance, parks and libraries. The benefits generated by the San Diego Convention Center since opening include:;xNLx;;xNLx;Regional Impact: $22.2 billion;;xNLx;Direct Attendee Spending: $13 billion;;xNLx;Tax Revenues: $555.7 million;;xNLx;Hotel Room Nights: 17.6 million;;xNLx;Attendance: 23 million;;xNLx;Events: 5,799

1983-11-01 00:00:00

Convention Center Planned for Waterfront

The Port of San Diego moves forward to fund and construct the San Diego Convention Center on the waterfront of San Diego Bay.

1985-05-22 00:00:00


Groundbreaking ceremonies are held for the facility: Phase I excavation begins.

1988-09-01 00:00:00

First Contract

Tele-Communications Association of America (TCA) signs first event contract for a 1990 event. TCA presents SDCCC with first deposit check of $15,740.

1989-11-24 09:00:00

Doors Open

The 1.7 million square foot San Diego Convention Center opens its doors. More than 200,000 people attend facility open house November 24 - 26.

1989-11-30 09:00:00

First Consumer Show

The first consumer show opens at the San Diego Convention Center: the San Diego International Boat Show.

1990-01-01 19:33:27

San Diego Magazine

Click on "Find out more" to read the San Diego Magazine article from 1990 about the opening of the convention center.

1990-12-31 05:01:18

354 Events in The First Year

A total of 354 events are held the first year of business, representing 1,183 activity days.

1991-07-01 05:01:18

First Comic-Con at SDCC

Comic-Con International is held for the first time in the San Diego Convention Center after moving from the San Diego Civic Center Concourse.

1991-12-31 05:01:18

Second Year of Operation

Second year of operation completed; $125 million in direct spending achieved. Just under one million guests attend 249 events.

1994-06-22 05:01:18

Phase II Expansion Approved

The City and the Port sign an agreement to fund the $140 million Phase II expansion; the Port provides 11 acres of adjacent waterfront property.

Your San Diego Convention Center

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