Philly's convention center touts a banner year

Pennsylvania Convention Center from Arch and 13th Sts., May 6, 2014. ( DAVID M WARREN / Staff Photographer )

 The Pennsylvania Convention Center hosted 221 conventions, meetings, and trade shows in 2016, attracting 1.1 million attendees, who stayed 365,000 nights in hotel rooms and spent $256 million, according to a report released by the Convention Center Tuesday.

The report was released on the first official day of the LightFair International convention — one of the city's largest in 2017. The convention, which ends Thursday, is expected to attract 23,000 attendees who will stay 25,000 nights in hotels, spend $27.4 million and generate $250,000 in hotel room taxes.

LightFair represents a big business win for the Center. Planners had vowed never to come back due to costs associated with its 2011 show. Philadelphia's 2011 show was 15 percent larger than New York's 2009 show, according to a report conducted by LightFair. But it took 51 percent more worker-hours here to install and dismantle the show — 19,723 here compared with 13,055 in New York.