Officials at the Prairie Capital Convention Center in Springfield say a $15.8 million renovation is on track to be completed by the end of the year.

The (Springfield) State Journal-Register reports the project is modernizing the 34-year-old facility that opened in 1979.

Bob Hope was the first performer to take the stage at the then-new venue, which he called a "gorgeous garage."

The latest work is aimed at adding more functional space inside the facility, while also sprucing up other areas. The project is adding bathrooms, a food court and is doubling the size of the building's lobby.

Meeting rooms are also being revamped.

Crews hope to have the bulk of the work done in time for a late-October appearance by Christian speaker Beth Moore.

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