Mayor Charles Meeker and Wake County Commissioner Betty Lou Ward joined together
today with the Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau (GRCVB) to open the
new Greater Raleigh Visitor Information Center (VIC).

The new center is located in the Raleigh Convention Center/Raleigh Marriott City Center
connector, 500 Fayetteville St. The 11:30 a.m. ribbon-cutting took place at the center's
exit onto City Plaza.

The VIC previously was located in the Raleigh City Museum on Fayetteville Street.
According to the GRCVB, which manages the center, the VIC accommodates more than
10,000 walk-in visitors annually as well as 4,481 calls and 8,021 visitor inquiries. The new
location is a much more high-traffic area between the Raleigh Convention Center, City
Plaza, the Raleigh Marriott City Center and close to the Sheraton Raleigh Hotel.

"Like the Raleigh Convention Center, City Plaza, Fayetteville Street, the Progress Energy
Center for the Performing Arts and the RLine, this is yet another amenity that will
further enhance the vibrancy of our Downtown," said Mayor Charles Meeker during the
grand opening. "The City of Raleigh is delighted to have teamed with Wake County to
create this center at this perfect location."

"We hope that we can reach even more residents, leisure visitors and meeting and
convention attendees and assist them in discovering that the Raleigh area has so much
to see through personal assistance from trained visitor information specialists and
tourism ambassadors," said GRCVB Executive Vice President Loren Gold.

The VIC features two televisions that showcase the area's attractions, natural beauty,
history, calendar of events, tour information, restaurant guides, amp, shopping and
transportation options.

The Greater Raleigh area hosted almost 10 million visitors last year contributing more
than 1.5 billion to the local economy.