A year after construction began, a pedestrian-focused revamped of the Georgia World Congress Center’s front stoop is all but finished.
As first pitched in 2018, the new pedestrian mall extends a protected downtown corridor for non-motorists from Centennial Olympic Park, around CNN Center and State Farm Arena, to Mercedes-Benz Stadium and a forthcoming high-rise hotel.
The $15-million upgrade converted two Andrew Young International Boulevard traffic lanes to a wide pedestrian expanse through GWCC’s campus, while also updating the East Plaza behind the Omni Hotel and installing new seating and dining areas.
An “iconic element” with GWCC branding now marks the mall’s entrance at Marietta Street.
Just south of the pedestrian mall, a new $18-million transportation depot will act as a hub for dedicated bus, taxi, and ride-share options serving the stadium district. It’s intended to help relieve congestion in the Marietta Street corridor and improve general traffic conditions.
According to a presentation during a Georgia World Congress Center Authority board of governors meeting in late February, work on both the pedestrian corridor and transportation depot was 99 percent finished.
Meanwhile, near the pedestrian mall’s westernmost edge, the most visible component of GWCCA’s expansion plans—the 975-room Signia by Hilton hotel—has begun vertical construction. It's expected to open in late 2023 as Atlanta’s sixth-largest hotel, in terms of room count. [UPDATE, March 10: GWCCA officials confirm today the Signia hotel will stand 40 stories—as opposed to 30 stories, as previously reported—and roughly 436 feet tall. That'll make it Atlanta's fifth tallest hotel tower.]
Head to the gallery for a photo tour of recent pedestrian-focused, traffic-calming changes in the area.
• Recent downtown news, discussion (Urbanize Atlanta)