To attract large events, you need a quality facility big enough and nice enough to draw an organizer’s interest.
And while Jim R. Miller Park in Marietta has spent years hosting sizable occasions, ranging from rodeos to concerts, officials realized it was time to upgrade from the decades-old buildings being used for exhibits and other gatherings.
As part of the voter-approved 2016 Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax, the old buildings A and B are now closed and being torn down. This will make way for a modern, more than 41,000-square-foot exhibit hall.
“I feel that the new exhibit hall is going to be a great addition to our park system,” Cobb County PARKS Director Jimmy Gisi said. “It will help Jim R. Miller Park become one of the premier special event facilities in the Atlanta metro area.”
This SPLOST project will cost approximately $13.2 million and the exhibit hall is expected to open by August in time for the annual North Georgia State Fair. The new building will feature a large lobby area, surrounded on two sides by glass curtain walls to allow maximum natural light, officials said.
It is planned to be suitable to host corporate meetings, banquets and trade shows that require more space and a higher degree of refinement, officials noted. The kitchen will have two windows to support concession sales to both the main exhibit halls and exterior plaza area. Featuring three halls, the new facility will be able to host a wide variety of events.
Its meeting space will be able to accommodate groups of any size with a large 25,000-square-foot room that can be broken down into three smaller 8,400-square-foot rooms. A loading dock will make it easy for any group to offload its supplies at the exhibit hall.
During the past year, Jim R. Miller Park has hosted 100 events and raised more than $108,000 for the county while still using the older buildings. Gisi said while the park is already home to events such as the YAARAB Shrine Circus and the fair, the new exhibit hall will help the park host additional special events such as weddings and conferences. The public reaction to the planned upgrade has been welcoming, he added.
“We have received nothing but positive comments and excitement from the current users of Miller Park and the business community,” he said.