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M.I.C.E. Venues

 July 17, 2007
Metro Toronto Convention Centre Launches New Online Planning Tool

 The Metro Toronto Convention Centre (MTCC) has launched an innovative new online planning tool as the latest addition to its state-of-the-art website technology offerings.

Designed specifically to address the needs of meeting and event planners, this unique new multimedia feature allows website visitors to take a detailed three-dimensional interactive virtual tour of all aspects of the MTCC on a 24/7 basis. As a result, users are able to develop a strong sense of how the MTCC is laid out, how it looks and feels, both in its exterior and interior spaces, to experience the ambience of its various facilities, and to get the specific information they need about the Centre as a potential event venue - all from the comfort and convenience of their own PC.

This unique application was developed exclusively for the MTCC by world-leading interactive mapping solutions designer, imap multi media inc of Vancouver. The Canadian application development firm specializes in highly tech-savvy mapping solutions that feature realistic artistic representations of the client facility. IMAP is the only supplier developing this kind of advanced specialty technology for hotels and convention centres.

The virtual tour went "live" on July 4, 2007 and has been receiving kudos from clients and industry watchers alike. To check out this exciting new feature, please visit the "Planners" area (www.mtccc.com/planners.cfm) of the MTCC's website and click on 'Floor Plans & Virtual Tours' found on the left navigation toolbar.

"It's much more than floor plans. It's a highly functional and powerful tool designed specifically for us and the needs of our clients. It makes planning a meeting at the MTCC an even more seamless and easy process," said
Bill McDonald, the MTCC's Director of Technology Services. "We are very proud of our ability to continue expanding our many online technological capabilities to our clients. We are committed to being a leader in this area" he added.

Users can literally "walk" through the Centre's facilities together with an MTCC Sales Manager while they are both online and choose the appropriate rooms and spaces for their event as they go. The program is also highly flexible. The interactivity of IMAP's application allows clients to quickly select and view all that the MTCC has to offer. In addition to utilizing the interactive planning feature to experiment with various floor layouts and room set-ups, users can also view 360-degree virtual tours using panoramic photography of different MTCC facilities.

"We were excited to provide the MTCC with our 3D Interactive Facility Floor Plan Solution to assist in elevating sales and marketing efforts while improving client services," said Robert Van Ginkel, President of imap multi media inc. "The Centre is better able to communicate, showcase and promote its impressive space in a highly visual and very effective manner," he added.

The virtual tour capability is an expansion of the MTCC's new web site, which was launched in the Fall of 2004. The Centre is well known for its commitment to innovation and leadership, particularly in the area of technology. The Centre has launched many technological "firsts" in recent years, and has been recognized for its advanced technology and telecommunications infrastructure.

Quality first and foremost

"Expanding our capabilities in this manner is one of the many ways we are working to ensure the MTCC maintains a world class convention centre presence online," McDonald noted, adding that the feature will enable the Centre to provide better client service and communications, while also enabling clients to make faster, more informed decisions.

Meeting and convention industry expert Corbin Ball reviewed the MTCC's new online e-planning tool and felt it more than exemplifies the top tier standards for which the MTCC is so well known. "The Metro Toronto Convention Centre virtual tour is one of the best events-related virtual tools I have seen," he said. "The very slick user-interface is easy to use and provides the key planning information and photos event managers are seeking." Ball is a highly respected international speaker, writer and consultant in the worldwide meeting and convention industry.

"Our focus was on building a valuable virtual tour function," said Bill McDonald, the MTCC's Director of Technology Services. "Virtual tours are de rigeur in our industry today. The difference is in the quality of the tour. We wanted to make sure our execution was flawless in terms of ease of navigation, quality of the visuals, ease of access, and the factual information users can obtain," McDonald said.