MADISON, Wis. -

Plans to demolish aging barn facilities at the Alliant Energy Center moved forward with the selection of a Madison architecture firm to design replacement pavilions, according to the county executive’s office.

Dane County Executive Joe Parisi said Thursday that local design firm Strang Inc. received the $745,000 contract to create the vision for modern, multi-use agriculture and exhibition pavilions.

In a statement, Parisi said the multi-use pavilions will secure the Alliant Energy Center as a state-of-the-art space for long-time staple events – such as the World Dairy Expo or the Midwest Horse Fair -- that bring millions into the region’s economy.

Parisi partnered with the state Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, and current AEC customers to fund an $18 million plan to replace the center’s existing barns with two modern multi-use pavilions. 

The state budget proposal before the legislature includes $9 million to fund half the cost of the project.

The resolution for the architecture bid passed the county board’s Personnel and Finance Committee and the Public Works and Transportation Committee this week, Parisi’s office said.

The vote to approve the plan is scheduled to take place at the board’s next meeting on May 2.