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The Georgia Dome is a domed stadium located in Atlanta, Georgiamarker, between downtown to the east and Vine Citymarker to the west. It has been the home stadium for the Atlanta Falcons since 1992, and is owned and operated by the State of Georgia as part of the Georgia World Congress Centermarker. The Georgia Dome was the largest domed structure in the world until 1999, when the Millennium Domemarker in Londonmarker was completed.

The Dome is accessible by rail via MARTA's East-West and Proctor Creek lines, which service the nearby Dome/GWCC/Philips Arena/CNN Center and Vine Citymarker stations.


The Georgia Dome was completed in 1992 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 71,228 for football, and can hold approximately: 75,000 for concerts, 53,000 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). The record for overall attendance at the Georgia Dome is 75,892 for the 2008 SEC Championship Game in football.

The structure is located on 9.19 acres (37,200 m²) of land; the dome has a height of 270.67 feet (82.5 m), a structure length of 744.75 feet (227 m), a structure width of 606.96 feet (185 m), and a total floor area of 102,149.51 ft² (9,490 m²). The dome is the largest cable-supported dome in the world. Its roof is made of teflon-coated fiberglass fabric (which is strong and lightweight) and has an area of 374,584.08 ft² (34,800 m²). From its completion until the December 31, 1999 opening of the Millennium Domemarker in Londonmarker, it was the largest domed structure of any type in the world, but still remains the largest indoor sporting facility in the United States.


The Georgia Dome originally had AstroTurf artificial surface for its football events.In 2003, Arthur Blank, the new owner of the Atlanta Falcons, funded the new state-of-the-art FieldTurf artificial surface system. FieldTurf has been favorably compared to real grass.


In 2006, the Atlanta Falcons and the Georgia World Congress Center Authority announced a $30 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. In 2008, the exterior of the stadium was repainted from its original color scheme to match the Falcons' team colors, and 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.. Additionally, in 2009 the 2 video screens in both endzones have been widened considerably to enhance views of replays.

Major weather-related issues

Three years after completion of the dome, pooling of water became an issue during a Falcons pre-season game when a severe rain storm led to tearing of the roof and a section of the roof falling into the stadium. No one was injured during the incident as the part of the roof that fell happened after the fans had left the stadium. The water and roof material smashed seats in the upper decks and knocked holes in concrete floors. The storm was intense enough that the roof panels could be seen moving during the game. The roof was repaired at that time in such a way to prevent this from occurring in the future.

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, which delayed the game for 1 hour and 3 minutes. The quarterfinal game to follow between Kentucky Wildcats and Georgia Bulldogs was postponed to the following day. The resulting damage forced the rest of the tournament to be moved to the Alexander Memorial Coliseummarker at Georgia Tech.

New stadium proposal

On December 25, 2008, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that a land developer, The Sembler Company, is in preliminary talks and negoitations to buy the former General Motors plant in Doravillemarker to build a new stadium for the Falcons.

In March 2009, it was revealed that other sites are being considered, including Bellwood Quarry, a Waste Management landfill near the Atlanta airportmarker, and Fort McPhersonmarker which is in the process of being closed under the Base Realignment and Closure process. A spokesperson for the committee overseeing the future of the military base said there was nothing in the plan which would allow for a stadium.

Events hosted

The Dome is home to the NFL's Atlanta Falcons and the annual host to the Southeastern Conference Football Championship Game, Chick-fil-A Bowl (formerly known as The Chick-fil-a Peach Bowl and The Peach Bowl) post-season college football games, and since 2004 the FIRST World Championships. Since 1998, the Dome also hosts the Atlanta Football Classic by Bank of America and the 100 Black Men of Atlanta. This is an annual HBCU football game between Tennessee State University and Florida A&M University. It was also home to the NBA's Atlanta Hawks during the construction of Philips Arenamarker from 1997 to 1999, as well as hosting basketball, team handball and gymnastics during the 1996 Summer Olympics. Since 1994, the Dome has hosted two Super Bowls and has also been host to both the Men's and Women's NCAA Final Four Basketball National Championships and several SEC and ACC basketball championships.

It hosted Super Bowl XXVIII in 1994 and Super Bowl XXXIV in 2000, as well as the prestigious NCAA Final Four Men's Basketball National Championship in 2002 and 2007 along with regional semi-finals and finals in 2001 and 2006 and NCAA Women's Final Four in 2003. The stadium will host the 2013 NCAA Final Four Men's Basketball National Championship. The Dome has been host to many WCW Monday Nitro and WWE RAW live events, including the now-infamous "Fingerpoke of Doom" in 1999 as well as the memorable championship bout between Bill Goldberg and Hulk Hogan. It was also the host to WWR Showdown XV. Since 2004, the Georgia Dome has annually hosted the FIRST Robotics Championship Event. Also, Drum Corps International held its first event at the Georgia Dome in July 2006 when the Dome hosted DCI Atlanta – The Southeastern Championship. As a result of damage done to the Louisiana Superdomemarker in New Orleans, Louisianamarker by Hurricane Katrina, the Sugar Bowl game was played at the Georgia Dome on January 2, 2006 which was 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 Chick-fil-a Peach Bowl between LSUmarker and Miami marker and an NFL game between the Falcons and the Carolina Panthers two days later. The Dome also hosted the inaugural Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Game in 2008, a college football game played between Clemson and Alabama. The Georgia Dome has also been the site of two NFC Divisional Playoff games, both won by the Falcons, during the 1998 and 2004 seasons. In the future, the stadium said it was interested in possibly hosting a 2018 or 2022 FIFA World Cup match if the United States is selected for either one.

While playing at the Georgia Dome on March 27, 1998, the Atlanta Hawks broke the NBA single-game attendance record with 62,046 fans.

The Georgia Dome also hosted the Georgia High School Association football semi-finals until 2007. The GHSA hosted the football finals for all classifications at the Dome in 2008. The Georgia Dome has also hosted many sold out concerts from many prominent music artists. These include U2 who played with MUSE, Metallica, Paul McCartney, Kid Rock, Korn, N' Sync, and many others.

The Georgia Dome will also host the inaugural football season for Georgia State Universitymarker when the school fields its first gridiron team in 2010. The Georgia Dome will also host the 2010 General Conference Sessions of Seventh-day Adventists.

The Georgia Dome has hosted the world FIRST Robotics Championship since 2004. Over 300 teams from around the world qualify annually, to compete in the championship held in mid April. The FIRST LEGO League World Festival and First Tech Challenge Championships occur at the same time, at different ends of the Dome.

On June 24, 2009, the dome hosted its first ever soccer match between Mexico and Venezuela. The dome held an attendance of 51,115 fans. Precision Turf of Lilburn laid 4-by-8 foot grass sections over the Dome’s FieldTurf.. Subsequently,on July 22, 2009, the Dome hosted a exhibition match between AC Milan of Italian Serie A league and Club America of Mexican Primera División league as part of the World Football Challenge. The game featured stars such as Ronaldinho and the attendance for the match was 53,600.

See also


  2. Chick-fil-A Bowl Event Guide: Georgia Dome Information
  3. Striking changes usher in new era for Dome
  4. Dome, Falcons announce new renovations
  5. Dome Renovations Photo Album
  6. Georgia Dome Is Damaged (1995)
  7. Storm hits Georgia Dome, interrupts SEC play
  8. Tornado Kills, 2 Pummels Downtown by Tim Eberly and Paul Shea for the Atlanta Journal and Constitution, March 15, 2008. Retrieved March 15, 2008.
  9. Sembler might build Falcons stadium in Doraville
  10. GM site touted as Falcons’ new nest
  11. The Palm Beach Post, Gators view Georgia Dome as someplace like home
  12. Georgia High School Association Constitution and By-Laws 2008-2009, pg. 70
  13. Georgia Dome converting to grass….for soccer

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