I-X Center

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International Exposition Center
AddressOne I-X Center Drive
Cleveland, Ohio 44135
Coordinates41°23′55″N 81°51′11″W / 41.39850°N 81.85312°W / 41.39850; -81.85312Coordinates: 41°23′55″N 81°51′11″W / 41.39850°N 81.85312°W / 41.39850; -81.85312
OwnerCity of Cleveland[1]
OperatorPark Corp.[2]
Enclosed space
 • Total space2,200,000 square feet (200,000 m2)

The International Exposition Center, better known as the I-X Center, is a convention and exhibition hall located in Cleveland, Ohio,[2] adjacent to Cleveland Hopkins International Airport. The 2,200,000-square-foot (200,000 m2) building includes over 1,000,000 square feet (93,000 m2) total square feet of exhibition and conference space,[3] making it one of the largest meeting, convention, and exhibition centers in the United States. The diverse show schedule includes public events featuring one of the country's largest boat shows, Trade Show 200 events, banquets and meetings attracting over 2 million visitors each year.

Originally located within Brook Park, Ohio,[4] the building and 90 acres (36 ha) of neighboring land became part of Cleveland in a 2001 land swap that sent most of the NASA Glenn Research Center to Brook Park.[5]


Air Force One passes in front of the I-X Center

It was built in 1942 as a General Motors-operated factory and was used to build bombers during World War II as the Cleveland Bomber Plant. For a time, it built the wing assembly for the B-29 Superfortress, then the experimental XP-75.[2]

It later served for many years as a tank factory.[4] The M41 Walker Bulldog, M56 Scorpion, M114, the MOG Howitzer, and the M551 Sheridan were built at the facility.[2] Former employees of the tank plant reported that there were at least two, maybe three basement levels. One basement had a large pool in it for testing water-tightness of production tanks.[citation needed]

It was vacant from 1970 to 1977, when it was purchased by Park Corp. with the intention of converting it into an exhibition hall. It re-opened in 1985 as the I-X Center. The Park Corp. sold the building to the City of Cleveland in 2001, but continues to lease and operate it.[2]

In 1990, the I-X Center was used as a temporary home for North Olmsted High School. On September 16, 1990, two students had set fire to the front of the high school, causing significant damage.

A 2008 expansion added 185,000 square feet (17,200 m2) of exhibition space, increasing the exhibition floor to 985,000 square feet (91,500 m2). The entire ceiling was repainted for the first time since 1984, using 27,000 gallons of paint.[3]

On May 3–4, 2014, the I-X Center hosted the first ever Pro Football Hall of Fame Fan Fest, which featured appearances by 100 NFL Hall of Famers including Jim Brown, Joe Namath, Barry Sanders, Lynn Swann, Marshall Faulk, Franco Harris, Warren Sapp and Terry Bradshaw. The successful campaign to bring the event to the I-X Center was spearheaded by Cleveland native Tony Gumina.[6] The Center has also hosted the National Sports Collectors Convention six times, with its seventh show coming in Summer 2018.[7]

Ferris wheel[edit]

The building's 125-foot (38 m) tall Ferris wheel is a centerpiece of the annual IX Indoor Amusement Park.[8] It premiered at the 1992 Greater Cleveland Auto Show, at which time it was the world's tallest indoor Ferris wheel.[9][10] The top of the wheel is enclosed in a glass atrium and rises approximately 35 feet (11 m) above the main roof.[11] It usually does not operate during trade shows.[12]


  1. ^ Teamor working for ex- owner of I-X He has been hired by company in California. The Plain Dealer. 2007-01-15. Accessed 2009-01-19.
  2. ^ a b c d e Carey, Allison (2007-02-19). "What's the Deal With... The I-X Center?". The Plain Dealer. Retrieved 2009-01-19.
  3. ^ a b Miller, Jay (2008-01-14). "I-X Center to add 185,000 square feet of exhibit space". Retrieved 2009-01-19.
  4. ^ a b "I-X Center". Encyclopedia of Cleveland History. Case Western Reserve University. 1997-07-02. Retrieved 2007-04-19.
  5. ^ Achkar, Alan (2001-02-07). "City, Brook Park End Airport War". The Plain Dealer.
  6. ^ http://www.cleveland.com/browns/index.ssf/2014/05/tony_gumina_who_made_pro_footb.html
  7. ^ http://nsccshow.com/about/
  8. ^ "IX Indoor Amusement Park". Retrieved 2009-01-19.
  9. ^ Kids Get Turn At Wheel As Auto Show Opens. The Plain Dealer. 1992-02-22. Accessed 2009-01-19.
  10. ^ About the Cleveland I-X Center in Cleveland Ohio
  11. ^ Facility Advantages & Services
  12. ^ FAQs

External links[edit]