Music City Center set to open May 20 - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Music City Center set to open May 20

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

The countdown is on for the grand opening of the Music City Center, and in just a little over a month the new convention center, nearly nine years in the making will open its doors.

Planners billed the facility as the city of Nashville's "front porch," and one thing is for sure: the Music City Center is a head-turner. Many onlookers have already started to form their own opinions.

"It's huge. It's immense. It's not like anything I've ever seen before," said Mike Childress, of Nashville. "You see a big hole in the ground and hope it's going to be something monumental, and it is in its own way."

The building covers 16 acres, and its curves even appear to form the shape of a guitar in a nod to Nashville's history of music.

"It's nice to have some curves, so not everything is just straight up and down and across. And it has different colors as well, so it adds some variety to the landscape," said tourist Richard Henderson.

Though the largest building in downtown Nashville is primarily meant for conventions, a spokesperson for the Music City Center said locals can expect to see it used for everything from private weddings to tourist attractions.

"We will be doing some tours. We've got a tour coordinator, so groups that want an official tour can schedule that. Really, it is open to citizens. We've got the Songwriter's Hall of Fame in there," said spokeswoman Holly McCall.

In fact, some annual visitors to Nashville were stunned to see just how much has changed since last summer.

"There's no scaffolding on the front. You can walk the street. We zig-zagged around last year, looking. It's awesome. It's massive," said tourist Neva Orne.

Soon, there will be no need for local drivers to zig-zag around the building either, as Korean Veterans Parkway will reopen, giving commuters access to areas that have been off limits for years.

Copyright 2013 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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