n June, the city put the financial framework in place for renovation of the Seaside Civic and Convention Center. Bonds for the convention center renovation will be sold for $15 million, then transferred to construction funds.

On Monday night, the City Council unanimously voted to authorize issuance of those bonds. The bonds will be paid back by an increase in the city’s lodging tax, approved last November.

“This is the next big step in the project,” Mayor Jay Barber said.

The project will add about 10,000 square feet to the 62,000-square-foot facility, and renovate more than 13,000 square feet of the space.

“This signals to the financial market that you are going to be out there and issue those bonds,” City Manager Mark Winstanley said. “It also instructs staff to tell the public the council is looking to issue $15 million of bonds, and if they have questions they can refer those questions to the council.”

Earlier this year, the convention center selected Portland-based Holst Architecture and Convergence Design of Kansas City for the contract to design the renovation and expansion of the 45-year-old facility.

This fall, the convention center added O’Brien and Co. Construction to the project team.

The renovation’s design phase could take six months and construction up to two years. Work is expected to be complete in the spring of 2019.

“Thank you for the sale of the bonds,” Russ Vandenberg, general manager of the convention center, said Monday. “It’s very exciting to move forward with this project. It’s going along very nicely as we are entering the design phase.”

Vandenberg plans to present an update on construction progress at the council’s Nov. 27 meeting.

In addition to the renovation, he said, the convention center has updated its website at seasideconvention.com.

“It’s refreshed. It’s interactive. It’s beautiful,” Vandenberg said. “It’s got many features the other site didn’t provide.”

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