You may have been to the International Roofing Expo (IRE) in Las Vegas before, but there’s definitely some new features that attendees will notice at the 2017 show beginning on March 1. For starters, there will be more space for roofing contractors to learn about products and network without having to physically rub elbows after major renovations to the Mandalay Bay Convention Center.

The first phase of construction, completed in 2015, added 350,000 square feet of exhibit space, a 20,000 square-foot foyer and underground parking to this popular trade show venue. The entire convention center now boasts more than 2 million square feet total, with nearly half of that comprised of contiguous exhibition space.

The renovations — fully completed in early 2016 — were part of a $100 million effort to remodel and upgrade the iconic venue on the Vegas Strip, including roughly 3,000 rooms. Of note to roofers: the resort also added a new photovoltaic solar system to what’s already reportedly the largest convention center solar array in the world. The additional panels span eight acres and give the facility a total of more than 28 acres of solar coverage.

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