GWCC Expansion Project

The hallmark of the GWCCA campus is connectivity. The connections between our venues, the hotel district, and the world's busiest airport are key differentiators in Atlanta's ability to compete for in-demand conventions and tradeshows. The dynamic evolution of the GWCCA campus continues with plans to create a fixed gateway between exhibit halls in Buildings B and C to create over one million square feet of contiguous exhibition space. Taking into account exhibitor interaction and the optimum flow of show attendees, GWCCA made the decision to select the north option to create a fixed gateway between exhibit halls in Buildings B and C. This project solidifies Atlanta’s place as the world’s premier convention destination, providing top-flight customer service and amenities for all events. The potential economic impact of the contiguous exhibition facility is $632 million.
ATTENDEES
Currently, the convention center's largest single exhibit space is 600,000 square feet – which limits the center's ability to accommodate some of the industry's largest events that instead opt for more spacious facilities in competing markets. Our largest tradeshows have had to in the past create temporary exterior walkways to connect the B&C buildings. The "band aid" approach puts the events at risk during inclement weather and mixes attendees with back-of-house areas not reflective of our service reputation of our facilities.
FAQ
  • When will project construction begin and how long will it last?
    We anticipate beginning work in early 2018 and estimate the project will take approximately 18-24 months to complete.
  • Why are you doing this now, given the high-profile events taking place on your campus over the next 3 years?
    The Authority was part of the process, led by the Atlanta Sports Council, in bringing three of the world's biggest sporting events to Atlanta and the GWCCA campus. This project will not impact any of the ancillary events, such as concerts, fan festivals, clinics and community gatherings, which will be held in Centennial Olympic Park and in Building A of the GWCC.
  • What types of shows would need such a large exhibition space?
    Some of GWCC's largest customers are already bursting at the seams. By developing a fixed gateway creating over one million square feet of contiguous exhibition space, it allows these shows to expand as their business grows. Additionally, it puts Atlanta on the map for the most in-demand trade shows.
  • How does this impact bathrooms and ADA accessibility?
    Bathrooms along the dock side walls in both building B and C will be removed so that the new construction work can be tied into the existing facilities. Temporary restrooms will be brought in to accommodate guests. These restrooms will be ADA accessible.
SHOW MANAGERS AND MEETING PLANNERS
While square footage of exhibit space and count of meeting spaces remain a metric for industry bookings, meeting and event planners are increasingly looking for flexible space that can adapt to their client's needs. The Georgia World Congress Center's chief competitors for large conventions and tradeshows (Chicago, Orlando and Las Vegas) all have over one million square feet of contiguous space. By connecting Building B and Building C exhibit halls, we are improving GWCC's connectivity while bolstering Atlanta's status as the premiere convention destination. The GWCC's expansion project is designed to accommodate exhibits, large banquets, and plenary sessions.
FAQ
  • When will project construction begin and how long will it last?
    We anticipate beginning work in early 2018 and estimate the project will take approximately 18-24 months to complete.
  • When I booked my show, I wasn't aware of this project. Are you offering discounted pricing due to the construction?
    We are not. But what I can tell you is that we are committed to being the world's premier convention destination, providing best-in-class service and amenities that come with this vision. As part of this commitment, we are committed to listening to your needs and delivering on every touchpoint to create a memorable experience for you and your attendees.
  • How and where are the two buildings being connected?
    The new exhibit hall will be constructed between the C3/C4 halls and the B4/B5 halls.
  • Will we still need to create temporary exterior walkways during construction?
    This is currently being evaluated with the design and construction teams.
  • Construction means confusion. What plans do you have in place to communicate new/alternate/closed access points for exhibitors and attendees?
    Our event services team is dedicated to the success of your event, right down to the smallest of details. We will work with your team before the show to develop communications to include essential “know before you go” information to make arrival and navigating the show seamless. Additionally, we will have signage (way finders, digital) and an on-the ground guest services team to help answers any questions.
  • I'm concerned about noise levels and accessibility for attendees. What contingencies do you have in place to ensure my show isn't impacted/that the attendee experience is best in class?
    Heavy noise work will be scheduled around events to minimize the noise impacts to the events.
  • Why not just add another building [Building D] to avoid putting current business at risk?
    As stewards of the campus, it is the Authority’s responsibility to assess each decision from a quality and efficiency perspective. An additional building would require the acquisition of land. After collaborating with our customers, partners, our board of governors, and leadership team, we came to the conclusion that utilizing our existing assets and connecting them to create additional exhibition space made the most sense financially and logistically.
  • How does this change the façade of Buildings B and C? Will there be new entry points created?
    No, you will not see a change to the façade of the two buildings. On the dock side of both buildings, parts of the docks will be removed to accommodate the new roof that will be tied in to span the new hall from B to C. There will be new entry points through the new overhead doors that will allow for move in/out of the halls.
  • Can I walk the construction site [site visit] prior to my show to ensure no surprises once show date arrives?
    Yes, you can discuss options to visit the area with your event coordinator for preplanning; or with your salesperson on prospective site visits. As with any construction zone, there will be areas that will be off limits, but we will work with our construction team to gain access to as many areas as possible.
  • Will you have extra staff on-hand during my show to ensure a smooth experience?
    We are committed to the success of your event and to creating a memorable experience for your guests. We will work with you identify your needs – whether it is extra staff, additional signage or volume of communication – and create a game plan that works for you.
EXHIBITORS
With the growth of the convention market, large, citywide shows are demanding more contiguous space to offer their exhibitors. By selecting the north option, the new contiguous exhibition space will feature improved sightlines with a consistent ceiling height, a wider contiguous opening, and the ability to maintain efficient loading from the marshalling yards.
FAQ
  • When will project construction begin and how long will it last?
    We anticipate beginning work in early 2018 and estimate the project will take approximately 18-24 months to complete.
  • Why did you select the North end?
    Taking into account multiple factors, including exhibitor interaction and the optimum flow of show attendees, GWCCA made the decision to select the north option to create a fixed gateway between exhibit halls in Buildings B and C. This option will provide improved sightlines with a consistent ceiling height and the opportunity to better space support columns, thus lending to the overall exhibitor and attendee experience.
  • Construction means confusion. What plans do you have in place to communicate new/alternate/closed access points for exhibitors and attendees?
    Our event services team is dedicated to the success of your event, right down to the smallest of details. We will work with your team before the show to develop communications to include essential "know before you go" information to make arrival and navigating the show seamless. Additionally, we will have signage (way finders, digital) and an on-the ground guest services team to help answers any questions.
  • What are you doing to ensure exhibitor, staff and attendee safety?
    Safety is of the utmost importance to us. We will install a safe separation between the construction activities and all GWCC events and attendees. These plans are currently in the works.
  • I'm concerned about noise levels and accessibility for attendees. What contingencies do you have in place to ensure my show isn't impacted/that the attendee experience is best in class?
    Heavy noise work will be scheduled around events to minimize the noise impacts to the events.
  • How will exhibitors access loading docks? How many loading docks will be impacted during construction?
    The new construction between the existing buildings results in removal of 33 truck docks. Those docks will be replaced with new docks on the west side of the B5 Hall, and as an alternate at the north side of the C4 Hall. Additional docks located at the west side of the B1 Hall will be a future option. Docks to the south of the expansion will remain intact during and after the new hall construction.
For more information, please contact your sales representative:
Brad Minton
Director of Sales
Cara Marbach
National Sales Manager
Kathy Pomey
Sales Manager
Katy Murray
Sales Manager
Tiffany Bowers
Sales Manager
Annette Sullivan
Sales Manager
Sarah Wilburg
Sales Manager
T.J. Moore
National Sales Manager
Adeola Sokunbi
Sales and Service Manager