On Tuesday, the Hickory City Council approved a $1.2 million contract with the architecture firm McMillian Pazdan Smith for design of the building.
Total cost for the new building will be $22 million.
The majority of the funding will come from the $15 million appropriated last year in the state budget for a new CVCC building.
Money for the Hickory Aviation Museum will come from fundraising. The city has raised $3.6 million of its $7 million goal so far.
The new workforce building, known formally as the CVCC Workforce Innovation Center, would include a three-story building.
The first story would be used for virtual simulators that could be used to train in tasks ranging from flying a plane to operating heavy machinery, Miller said. The second floor would serve as classroom space, while the third is intended to be a restaurant.
The Hickory Daily Record contributed to this story