The city's Downtown Development Authority has estimated it willcost $210 million to build a conference center, a performing artstheater, a hotel and accompanying retail, as well as a parkinggarage, on the property. The council flew to Kingsport, TN to theMeadowView Marriott Conference Resort and Convention Center, and toRosemont, IL to view the Rosemont Convention Center. Both centersare very large, and offer many rooms for conventions and theaterevents.

Council members will most likely discuss their trip at theirnext meeting July 23. Mayor Matt Pryor says it will probably takeeight months to make a decision about the property.

A children's museum and an IMAX theater have already droppedplans to build on the site, after a newly elected council,including Pryor, indicated its distaste for the two projects.

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