Cobb Chamber Approves Plan to Sell Land and Building
Wednesday, January 9th, 2019
The Cobb Chamber’s Board of Directors has approved a plan to put the organization’s building and land up for sale to determine the viability of moving to another location in the Cumberland Community Improvement District. This is after an extensive process throughout the last year led by 2018 Chairman Trey Sanders and following approval by the Cobb Chamber Foundation Board of Directors, Finance Committee and Executive Committee.
“During our strategic planning process in 2017, we received overwhelming feedback from community stakeholders that it was time to update our 35-year-old facility to accurately reflect our brand and today’s workplace styles for our 10,000+ visitors to our building per year, our employees and our tenants,” says Sharon Mason, President and CEO of the Cobb Chamber. “Last year, we went through an extensive process to determine the financial feasibility of renovating our existing building or moving to a new location. It became clear to us that while this building has served us well for 35 years, the property couldn’t meet our needs for the future.”
The Chamber’s current building faces several challenges—it requires significant expenses to maintain and available parking is a limiting factor with the growing number of visitors to the chamber. The building will be placed on the real estate market in January.
The Chamber’s first building was built in 1962 on Cobb Highway. In 1982, a group of influential Chamber members led by Johnny Gresham began a plan to build a bigger facility on the newly developed Interstate North Parkway. Earl Patton donated the land and Wyman Pilcher and John Williams led a team that raised funds that enabled the Chamber to build and occupy the building without any debt. On May 20, 1983, the Chamber broke ground on the project and the building was completed in June 1984. The original building was 18,000 square feet and housed the staffs of the Cobb Chamber, the Cobb International Center, The Cumberland CID, the Commuter Club and the Development Authority of Cobb County. In 1997, the Chamber initiated a renovation to create a new media center. And, in 2007 the Chamber initiated a second renovation, also debt-free, to add a community room, break room and additional storage to make the building the 24,672 square feet that it is today. On April 23, 2007 the building was named to honor U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson. In 2013, the Cobb Community Foundation staff moved to the Cobb Chamber’s facility. In addition to the 10,000+ visitors per year to the Cobb Chamber’s building for ongoing community events and committee meetings, the building is also used to showcase Cobb County to prospective companies the Select Cobb team and partners are working to recruit to Cobb.
“With this move, we will honor the leaders that have made our chamber what it is today including the current individuals with name recognitions at our existing building such as U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson,” Mason said. “We are also planning to bring our current partners housed at our existing facility with us to our new location. Our next steps will be to work with our Foundation Board of Directors and Finance Committee on our buyer and move options over the next few months.”