by Joseph Dennis
Executive Director, Gwinnett Center
Since the Gwinnett Center”s doors opened in November 1992, there have been several new additions to the facility – including the 21,600-square-foot versatile Grand Ballroom and the state-of-the-art 13,000-seat Arena. As time has evolved, our 50,000-square-foot Convention Center, including the 722-seat Performing Arts Center and Arena, has made great strides to maintain a reputation of not only exceptional service, but also maintaining facility updates throughout the years.
By maintaining all three facilities, we have been able to have over one million visitors per year in the Arena and over half a million visitors through the Convention Center. Gwinnett Center employees and Gwinnett County have helped ensure several new additions for this upcoming year, including a new state-of-the-art parking deck, exterior signage and new, fully-loaded websites for GwinnettCenter.com and RentGwinnettCenter.com.
We”ve already broken ground on the parking deck with a local Gwinnett County contractor, Mathias Corporation. The parking deck will include 950 parking spaces, a new staff assembly area, locker room, a training facility for event staff, and exclusive suite and club access for all premium seating ticket holders. The parking deck will be energy efficient and include area sensitive lighting and energy efficient wells. Photo sensors will control area sensitive lighting, allowing the lights to turn off and on at the appropriate times of the day. Ten wells will be constructed together to create an energy-efficient module that will allow the Arena to save $20,000 in annual water costs and over half a million gallons of water per year. Key energy efficient credits like these are being collected for future LEED Certification. May 2009 is the completion date of the project.