State closes on acquisition of Exposition Center

The State of Wisconsin took ownership this week of the Wisconsin Exposition Center at Wisconsin State Fair Park in West Allis.

The purchase from State Fair Park Exposition Center inc., approved earlier in the year by the State Building Commission, will allow the State of Wisconsin to obtain a $38 million asset at a cost of $13.9 million.

The Fair Park Board will operate the exposition business and make annual rental payments that will fund the state’s debt service cost.

Employees of the exposition center will be contracted by the Fair Park during the transition. Once state positions are approved, all employees of the Wisconsin Exposition Center will have the ability to interview for positions that will be publicly posted.

“The purchase of the Wisconsin Exposition Center is a tremendous opportunity for State Fair Park,” said Susan Crane, chairman of the State Fair Park Board. “The discounted purchase price will bring capital costs in line with revenues ensuring a viable ongoing exposition business benefiting the community while also promoting financial stability at the Fair Park.”

Built in 2002, the Wisconsin Exposition Center is the largest exposition center in Wisconsin with more than 200,000 gross square feet of contiguous exposition space.

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