Georgia Dome

Georgia Dome
Address 1 Georgia Dome Drive Northwest
Location Atlanta, Georgia
Coordinates 33°45′27″N 84°24′3″W / 33.75750°N 84.40083°W / 33.75750; -84.40083Coordinates: 33°45′27″N 84°24′3″W / 33.75750°N 84.40083°W / 33.75750; -84.40083
Public transit Dome / GWCC / Philips Arena / CNN Center (MARTA station)
Vine City (MARTA station)
Owner State of Georgia
Operator Georgia World Congress Center Authority
Capacity Football: 74,228
Georgia State football: 28,155[1]
Basketball: 71,000[2]
Total Capacity: 80,000[3]
Surface Astroturf (1992–2002)
FieldTurf Classic HD (2003–present)
Broke ground November 22, 1989
Opened September 6, 1992
Construction cost US$214 million
($361 million in 2016 dollars[4])
Architect Heery International; Rosser FABRAP International; and tvsdesign
Project manager Barton-Malow[5]
Structural engineer Weidlinger Associates[5]
General contractor Beers/Georgia Dome Team[5]
Atlanta Falcons (NFL) (1992–present)
Peach Bowl (NCAA) (1993–present)
Atlanta Hawks (NBA) (1997–1999)
Georgia State Panthers (NCAA) (2010–2016)

The Georgia Dome is a domed stadium located in Atlanta, Georgia, United States, between downtown to the east and Vine City to the west. It is owned and operated by the State of Georgia as part of the Georgia World Congress Center Authority. It is primarily the home stadium for the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football League (NFL) and the Georgia State Panthers football team from Georgia State University. Also, it has hosted the Peach Bowl since 1992 and the SEC Championship Game since 1994. In addition, the Georgia Dome has also hosted several soccer matches since 2009 that have drawn over 50,000 fans.

The Dome is accessible by rail via MARTA's Blue and Green lines, which service the nearby Dome/GWCC/Philips Arena/CNN Center and Vine City stations.

The Georgia Dome was the largest covered stadium in the world by capacity when it opened in 1992, but it has since been surpassed by AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas and by Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, Wales.



In 1992, the Georgia Dome was completed at a cost of $214 million (US), which came from the Georgia General Assembly, making it one of the largest state-funded construction projects in state history. It seats 74,228 for football, and can hold approximately: 80,000 for concerts, 71,000 for basketball when the dome is fully open and 40,000 for basketball and gymnastics when the dome is sectioned off (one half closed off by a large curtain). For most Georgia State football games, the dome is configured with 28,155 seats, with tickets for only the bulk of the lower level and the club-level seats on sale.[1][6] The record for overall attendance at the Georgia Dome is 80,892 for the 2008 SEC Championship Game in football.[7]

The structure is located on 9.19 acres (3.72 ha) of land; the dome has a height of 270.67 feet (82.50 m), a structure length of 745.75 feet (227.30 m), a structure width of 606.96 feet (185.00 m), and a total floor area of 102,149.51 square feet (9,490.000 m2). The dome is the largest cable-supported dome in the world. Its roof is made of teflon-coated fiberglass fabric and has an area of 374,584.08 square feet (34,800.000 m2). From its completion until the December 31, 1999 opening of the 20-acre (8.1 ha) Millennium Dome in London, it was the largest hooked domed structure of any type in the world.


The Georgia Dome originally used AstroTurf artificial surface for its football events. In 2003, Arthur Blank, the new owner of Atlanta Falcons, funded the new FieldTurf artificial surface system.[8]


In 2006, the Atlanta Falcons and the Georgia World Congress Center Authority announced a $300 million renovation to the Georgia Dome. The project was separated into two stages. The first stage, which took place before the 2007 NFL season, focused on updating the premium seating areas, including the creation of eight 'super-suites' as well as an owners' club.[9] In 2008, the exterior of the stadium was repainted, replacing the original teal and maroon color scheme with a red, black and silver theme to match the Falcons' team colors; the stadium's original teal seats were replaced with red seats in the 100 and 300 levels and black seats in the Verizon Wireless Club Level (200 Level). The entrance gates and concourses were also renovated and updated before the 2008 football season.[10][11] In 2009, the video screens in both endzones were relocated to a new exterior monument sign on Northside Drive. The interior endzones each received a new and considerably wider High Definition video screen that significantly enhances views of replays, as well as graphics and digital presentations. A new sound system was installed in the same year, replacing the previous system that was nearly 20 years old.

Three years after the completion of the Dome, the integrity of its roof became an issue. During a Falcons pre-season game in August 1995, a severe rainstorm caused water to pool on the fabric, tearing part of the material and causing a section of the roof to fall into the stadium. The storm was intense enough that the roof panels could be seen moving during the game, and the water and roof material later fell with enough force to smash seats in the upper decks and knock holes in concrete floors. The collapse occurred after fans left the stadium, and no one was injured during the incident. The roof was eventually repaired in a way that prevented similar incidents from occurring in the future.[12][13]

In the 2008 Atlanta tornado outbreak on March 14, 2008, during the 2008 SEC Men's Basketball Tournament, a tornado ripped two holes in the dome during the AlabamaMississippi State quarterfinal game, delaying the game for about an hour. The quarterfinal game to follow between the Kentucky Wildcats and Georgia Bulldogs was postponed until the following day.[13] The resulting damage forced the rest of the tournament to be moved to the Alexander Memorial Coliseum, now known as Hank McCamish Pavilion, at Georgia Tech.[14]


Main article: Mercedes-Benz Stadium

It was announced in 2010 that the Georgia World Congress Center Authority, the stadium's operator, is pursuing a new stadium with a retractable roof, just south of the Georgia Dome. Upon completion of Mercedes-Benz Stadium in 2017, the Georgia Dome will be demolished to make way for parking for the new stadium; the GWCCA also plans to build a new 800-room hotel on a portion of the Georgia Dome site.[15] The Falcons' final regular season game in the Georgia Dome is scheduled for January 1, 2017 against the New Orleans Saints, while the stadium's final scheduled publicly ticketed event will be a Supercross event on February 25, 2017. Despite construction delays moving Mercedes-Benz Stadium's opening to June 2017, the GWCCA plans to decommission the Georgia Dome for events by March 1, 2017 in order to have demolition complete before 2018.[16]

Events hosted


The Dome is home to the NFL's Atlanta Falcons, the annual host (since 1998) to FCS Classic football game between Florida A&M Rattlers and another HBCU opponent (Southern Jaguars in 2011 and Tennessee State Tigers in prior years), and the annual host to the Southeastern Conference Football Championship Game and the Chick-fil-A Bowl (also known as the Peach Bowl) post-season college football games. The stadium also hosted Super Bowl XXVIII in 1994 and Super Bowl XXXIV in 2000. From the program's inception in 2010 until 2016, the stadium was home of the NCAA Division I Georgia State Panthers of Georgia State University; the university acquired the Atlanta Braves' former home of Turner Field with plans to renovate the former baseball park for football.

The Georgia Dome also annually hosted the Georgia High School Association football semi-finals until 2007 and now hosts the GHSA state championship games for all classifications at the Dome.[17]

As a result of damage done to the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina, the Sugar Bowl game between the West Virginia Mountaineers and the Georgia Bulldogs was played at the Georgia Dome on January 2, 2006, the first time "the South's Biggest Bowl Game" was ever played outside the state of Louisiana. The Sugar Bowl finished a string of three football games in four days that started with the 2005 Peach Bowl between LSU and Miami (Florida) and an NFL game between the Falcons and the Carolina Panthers two days later. The Georgia Dome is now the alternative site for the Sugar Bowl where the Mercedes-Benz Superdome cannot host due to weather or other reasons.[18]


The Georgia Dome has hosted the NCAA Final Four Men's Basketball National Championship in 2002, 2007 and 2013, along with regional semi-finals and finals in 2001, 2004, 2006 and 2012 and NCAA Women's Final Four in 2003. The SEC Men's Basketball Tournament has been held at the Georgia Dome during 10 seasons, most recently in 2014. The ACC Men's Basketball Tournament has been held at the Georgia Dome on two occasions, in 2001 and 2009.

It was also one of two homes, along with the facility then known as Alexander Memorial Coliseum, for the NBA's Atlanta Hawks during the construction of Philips Arena from 1997 to 1999.[19] While playing at the Georgia Dome on March 27, 1998, the Atlanta Hawks set a then-NBA single-game attendance record with 62,046 fans.


For the 1996 Summer Olympics, one-half of the arena hosted the basketball competitions (including final) while the other half hosted the artistic gymnastics events and team handball (men's final).[20][21]


The dome has held a number of international soccer matches. On June 24, 2009, the dome hosted its first ever soccer match between Mexico and Venezuela in front of 51,115 fans, with grass laid over the FieldTurf.[22] On February 9, 2011, Mexico and Bosnia and Herzegovina played a friendly match in front of 50,507 fans.[23][24] On July 20, 2013, the Dome hosted two quarter-final match-ups of the 2013 Gold Cup—Panama vs. Cuba and Mexico vs. Trinidad & Tobago—in front of 54,229 fans.[25] In March 2014, the Dome hosted a 0-0 draw between Mexico and Nigeria in front of 68,212 fans, the largest ever crowd for a soccer match in Atlanta.[26]

The dome has also hosted a number of exhibition matches between club teams. On July 22, 2009, the Dome hosted a match between A.C. Milan of Italian Serie A league and Club América of Mexican Primera División before 50,306 fans.[27] On July 28, 2010, Club América revisited the Dome in a friendly against Manchester City from the English Premier League in front of 33,000 fans.[28][29]

The stadium was an official candidate venue for hosting matches as part of the United States' bid for the 2022 FIFA World Cup, but Qatar was selected to host the tournament.[30]

The stadium held an international women's friendly between United States and Russia on February 12, 2014.

On April 16, 2014 it was announced by Arthur Blank, owner of the Atlanta Falcons, that he had secured the rights to a new Major League Soccer franchise that is expected to begin play in 2017. The new team, later unveiled as Atlanta United FC, along with the Atlanta Falcons, will become the primary tenants of Mercedes-Benz Stadium, scheduled to open in time for the start of the 2017 NFL season.[31]


During the Monday Night War in the late 1990s both WWE Raw and WCW Nitro were held in the Georgia Dome with the July 6th 1998 episode of Nitro being one of the most watched and attended professional wrestling broadcasts. Over 40,000 attended the show.

Attendance record 71,617 fans at WrestleMania XXVII at the Georgia Dome.

In September 2009, it was reported that the city of Atlanta was seeking to host WrestleMania XXVII at the Georgia Dome.[32] A press conference was held on February 1, 2010 at the Georgia Dome to formally announce the event for Atlanta.[33] According to WWE's senior vice president of special events, John Saboor, Atlanta was ultimately chosen for, among other reasons, "their track record of success with large events, rich in its tradition with the WWE, great infrastructure."[34] The event marked the first time WrestleMania has been held in the state of Georgia.[33]

On April 3, 2011, The Georgia Dome hosted WWE's 27th annual flagship event, WrestleMania XXVII, which featured the return of Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson to host WrestleMania in his first appearance at the event since WrestleMania XX seven years prior. The event was attended by a record 71,617 fans.

The interior of the Georgia Dome prior to the 2008 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game


In 2008, the Georgia Dome started showing safety videos before games, presented by Deltalina, flight attendant "mascot" of Delta Air Lines. The videos satirise Delta's massively popular "Deltalina" inflight safety videos. The videos' theme was "Delta Safety First".[35][36]

See also


  1. 1 2 "Georgia Dome". Georgia State Athletics. Retrieved October 19, 2011.
  2. 2008 SEC Men's Basketball Tournament
  3. Tucker, Tim (April 1, 2013). "Georgia Dome has a new look for Final Four". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved April 7, 2013.
  4. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Community Development Project. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
  5. 1 2 3 Cable Top Football Columbia University
  6. "Georgia Dome Seating Chart" (PDF). Georgia State Athletics. Retrieved October 19, 2011.
  7. Archived December 8, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  8. Chick-fil-A Bowl Event Guide: Georgia Dome Information
  9. Striking changes usher in new era for Dome
  10. Dome, Falcons announce new renovations
  11. Dome Renovations Photo Album
  12. Georgia Dome Is Damaged (1995)
  13. 1 2 Storm hits Georgia Dome, interrupts SEC play
  14. Tornado Kills, 2 Pummels Downtown by Tim Eberly and Paul Shea for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, March 15, 2008. Retrieved March 15, 2008.
  15. Stafford, Leon. "GWCC hotel moving closer to reality". The Atlanta Journal Constitution. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  16. Tucker, Tim. "Plans in works to 'decommission' the Dome". The Atlanta Journal Constitution. Retrieved 2 July 2016.
  17. Georgia High School Association Constitution and By-Laws 2008–2009, pg. 70
  18. Sugar Bowl
  19. The Palm Beach Post, Gators view Georgia Dome as someplace like home
  20. 1996 Summer Olympics official report. Volume 1. p. 540.
  21. 1996 Summer Olympics official report. Volume 3. pp. 451, 456.
  22. Georgia Dome converting to grass….for soccer
  23. Mexico will play a soccer match at Georgia Dome Atlanta Journal-Constitution
  24. "Bosnia vs. Mexico Ends with Mexico Win". CBS News. February 9, 2011.
  25. FOXXoccerTrax,
  26. USA Today, Mexico, Nigeria soccer teams play to 0-0 tie in Atlanta, March 6, 2014,
  27. Daniel Marquez heads winner for Club America Soccer Net
  28. Score Atlanta, AISC: Georgia Dome continues to impress as soccer venue, July 29, 2010,
  29. Archived July 2, 2010, at the Wayback Machine.
  30. United States Soccer Federation (April 23, 2009). "The Official Site of U.S. Soccer – Federation Services". Archived from the original on April 26, 2009. Retrieved May 9, 2009.
  31. Leslie, Jennifer (April 16, 2014). "It's official: MLS team coming to Atlanta". Retrieved May 9, 2014.
  32. Schoolcraft, Lisa R. (2009-09-25). "Atlanta is bidding for WrestleMania". Atlanta Business Chronicle. Retrieved 2010-02-01.
  33. 1 2 "Atlanta to host WrestleMania XXVII". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2010-02-01. Retrieved 2010-02-01.
  34. Rupani, Meena (2010-05-20). "Miami-Dade Sports Commission chair 'relentless' in wrestling showcase bid". Miami Today. Retrieved 2011-02-09.
  35. "DELTALINA WAGS HER FINGER AT THE DOME", "Peach Buzz", Access Atlanta (Atlanta Journal-Constitution), September 24, 2008
  36. "Delta, Official Airline of the Atlanta Falcons", Delta Air Lines, September 26, 2008
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Georgia Dome.
Events and tenants
Preceded by
Atlanta–Fulton County Stadium
Home of the
Atlanta Falcons

1992 – 2016 (projected)
Succeeded by
Mercedes-Benz Stadium
Preceded by
Omni Coliseum
Home of the
Atlanta Hawks

Succeeded by
Philips Arena
Preceded by
Legion Field
Home of the
SEC Championship Game

1994 – 2016 (projected)
Succeeded by
Mercedes-Benz Stadium
Preceded by
Atlanta–Fulton County Stadium
Home of the
Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl

1992 – 2016 (projected)
Succeeded by
Mercedes-Benz Stadium
Preceded by
Louisiana Superdome
Home of the
Sugar Bowl

Succeeded by
Louisiana Superdome
Preceded by

H.H.H. Metrodome
RCA Dome
Mercedes-Benz Superdome
NCAA Men's Division I
Basketball Tournament
Finals Venue

Succeeded by

Louisiana Superdome
AT&T Stadium
Preceded by
Rose Bowl
Pro Player Stadium
Host of the Super Bowl
XXXIV 2000
Succeeded by
Joe Robbie Stadium
Raymond James Stadium
Preceded by
University of Phoenix Stadium
Host of WrestleMania XXVII
Succeeded by
Sun Life Stadium
Preceded by
Candlestick Park
Host of NFC Championship Game
Succeeded by
CenturyLink Field
Preceded by
Reliant Park
Host of FIRST Robotics World Championship
Succeeded by
Edward Jones Dome
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