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WILDWOOD, NJ-This Cape May County oceanfront resort town in extreme Southern New Jersey has cut the ribbon on its new 260,000-sf Wildwood Convention Center just in time for the summer season. The floorplan covers space for exhibits, ballrooms and meetings, an oceanfront deck, a 30,000-sf lobby area and a main hall with seating for up to 7,000 people.

“This convention center is an example of how state government can serve as an economic engine when it works in partnership with local government,” Gov. Jim McGreevey told attendees at the grand opening. “The center is the cornerstone of Wildwood’s renaissance, a $68 million project that will help stimulate the city’s economy.”

The complex was financed by the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, a state agency. The NJSEA, of course, owns and operates the Meadowlands Sports Complex in Northern, New Jersey, as well as Monmouth Park Racetrack, the new Atlantic City Convention Center and several other venues around the Garden State. The agency is currently involved in a number of issues that could affect its own future, including the proposed arena for downtown Newark.

At the grand opening, McGreevey also brought tidings of funding for other projects in Wildwood and Cape May County, including more than $32 million in state school construction aid that will support nearly $73.5 million worth of new school construction, renovations and expansions. Also on tap are an estimated $21 million in state spending over the next year for a variety of transportation projects, including road improvements, congestion relief, bridge repairs and safety improvements.

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