Groundbreaking Set for Georgia State Convocation Center

Friday, November 13th, 2020

Construction of Georgia State University’s $85.2-million convocation center at the intersection of Fulton Street and Capitol Avenue will get underway next week.

President Mark Becker will host a groundbreaking ceremony at 10 a.m., Nov. 17, at 455 Capitol Ave., to kick off the building phase of the project.

Brasfield & Gorrie is the construction manager for the project. SLAM/Heery/Perkins & Will are the design architects and Gleeds is the program manager.

Announced in 2018, the convocation center will provide indoor space for a variety of large gatherings, including commencements and indoor concerts. It will also be the new home of Panthers basketball.

With flexible interior spaces, the building will accommodate as many as 7,300 people for basketball games, 7,500 for graduation events and 8,000 for concerts, according to Ramesh Vakamudi, vice president of Georgia State Facilities Management.

The convocation center will be an upgrade from the Georgia State Sports Arena, which was constructed in 1972 and has a maximum capacity of 3,500 seats.

The new facility will also include classroom and academic support space as well as the ability to accommodate large conferences and esports tournaments.

“The vision for this facility, and the direction we got from President Becker, was for this to be a truly multiuse facility,” Vakamudi said. “This is a facility that is desperately needed by Georgia State, which now graduates more than 10,000 students per year.”

The convocation center, on a 6-acre site just north of Center Parc Stadium, will further advance the economic vitality of the neighborhoods surrounding the stadium, which Georgia State acquired in 2017 and converted from the home of Major League Baseball’s Atlanta Braves to the home of the Panthers football team.

It’s the latest construction project in an area that has seen a resurgence of residential and retail development since 2017.

Grading and site preparation work for the convocation center is to begin next week, with construction expected to be completed in August 2022.