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Albany Capital Center holds ribbon cutting

Albany Capital Center holds ribbon cutting (WRGB)
Albany Capital Center holds ribbon cutting (WRGB)
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ALBANY, NY (WRGB)--The Albany Capital Center is officially open for business

Officials cut the ribbon on the multimillion dollar project Wednesday afternoon.

As you take the escalator up in the $78.5 million, state-of-the-art convention center, you see a history of Albany emerge through the years in a mural.

Art fills the center, then you see the LED lights overhead that can be configured in any color combination a convention wants.

In one room the ceiling is 26 feet high, and they can sit up to 4,000 people inside.

There can also be a basketball court- this will be used in conjunction with the MAAC Tournament .

"It sure was in rough shape when if first came to this city - and to see the transformation in two shorts years is. Itching short of phenomenal," said Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul.

In August 2014 they imploded the unused Wellington annex to make room for the Albany Capital Center.

But the vision even goes back to the days of former mayor Jerry Jennings.

"This was started out as a bigger proposition but it was downsized which was good as we went through process. As I worked with four governors, I give Gov. Cuomo a lot of credit for saying let's get it done," said former Albany mayor Jerry Jennings.

"And I think it creates the sense of pride this is a world class city," said Mayor Kathy Sheehan.

Gavin Donohue, Chair Albany Convention Center Authority Board gave a tour, saying walls downstairs can be moved to create specific size rooms and allow for multiple events to coexist.

"It makes us more marketable," he said.

Donohue says close to 70 events have already been booked for this year.

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As for the economic impact, the center is expected to bring $1 million in taxes a year to the state and region.

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