Earlier today, the Republican National Convention Committee conducted another media walkthrough of the buildout of the Rivercenter complex. In its fourth week, the Xcel Center has begun to take shape, although we’re mostly seeing framework at this point. As you can see in this video, the podium dominates the center, and bloggers attending the event can see their ringside seats built out for the first time:
Behind the podium, the RNCC will have a 1500-square-foot HDTV screen, the first time they have used HD at a convention. Unlike the 2004 Madison Square Garden event, the podium will not get replaced on the last day for the acceptance speech with something unique. The state delegations will almost encircle it on the floor.
Bloggers will have the best seats in the house, among the media. The reserved sections for bloggers are at the top level, but they directly face the podium. The other media locations are mostly congregated at the two ends of the Xcel ellipse; I tried panning around to show where some have already put up signage, including the BBC, AP, and others. C-SPAN has a good corner location on the lower level.
Mike Miller, the veteran Director of Operations of ten GOP conventions, did most of the work with the media today. The other areas were in too chaotic a state to allow walk-throughs, but we should be able to see more next week. Stick around to the end to hear what Mike says is his specialty.