2018 Stadium Managers Association Annual Seminar: "Spotlight Atlanta"

2017 was a big year for Atlanta sports fans with the arrival of the new Mercedes Benz Stadium and SunTrust Park. While the city’s national football league and major league baseball teams left their longtime homes for new stadiums, Georgia State turned the iconic Turner Field into the new home for the University’s Panthers football program.

At the Stadium Managers Association (SMA) Annual Seminar – in a session spotlighting Atlanta – CBRE | Heery Project Architect Dane Hawthorne discussed the adaptive re-use and repurposing of the original Turner Field for its third evolution as an alternative to creating venues that are replaced and demolished.  The presentation covered the planning, design process and renovation of the new Georgia State Stadium.

The audience learned the course of action the design team took to meet the objectives outlined by Georgia State, which were to convert the existing infrastructure into a college stadium that represents the distinct Georgia State brand, provides a future for Panthers Football, generates revenue, and fosters an interactive fan experience – all within a nine-month design and construction schedule.

The SMA Annual Seminar was this week in San Diego, California, with administrators and operations personnel from teams, colleges and universities gathering to listen to top leaders in the industry discuss stadium specific topics and trends. The SMA session spotlighting Atlanta stadiums included a expert panel of design professionals and event managers discussing the recent facility construction and renovations for the Atlanta Braves’ SunTrust Park, Atlanta Falcons’ Mercedes-Benz Stadium and Georgia State University’s Georgia State Stadium.