INEARLY2014,METRODETROITWILLDEBUTTHEBRAND- newCoboCenter after a six-year, $221-million transforma- tion.The project ismore than just a renovation—it’s a com- plete upgrade of the center’s experience, image, and service, in addition to a floor-to-ceiling revamp and expansion.Not onlywill newballrooms, exhibit space, and high-techmeet- ing rooms boost the center’s capacity to be able to host more than 95 percent of the world’s largest conventions, the newcenterwill offer planners and attendees an entirely newconvention experience inDetroit. The centerpiece of the
expansion is a dramatic, three-story glass atriumjust inside themain entrance, with panoramic views of the DetroitRiver.Anewglass- encased façade alongwith an oversized “mediamesh” sign (a programmable LEDsystemdisplaying images and video) willwelcome attendees to the center.Other exterior upgrades include an entrance to a completely overhauled food court, as well as a newentrance to the lower-level convention space. TheCoboArena, once a premier sports and entertainment
venue,will also find newlife as the region’s newest event space.The arenawill become a 40,000-square-foot ballroom equippedwith a hydraulic lift stage for dramatic introduc-
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tions, complemented by glass-enclosed prefunction space. The arena’s adjacent riverfront areawill also bemade avail- able for outdoor events.Meeting planners can take advan- tage of reconfiguredmeeting rooms that have been upgraded with the latest in technology andAVcapabilities on the south side of the facility.And to further take advantage ofCobo Center’s riverside location, high-efficiency glasswill replacemost of the exterior river-facingwalls, to let in more natural light and fabu- lous views.The three-phase renovation plan ensures a seamless experience for all events inCoboCenter, since the renovationwork is self- contained and insulated fromevents taking place at the center. Technology upgrades in
CoboCenter are already enhancing the customer
experience.High-speedWi-Fi (802.11g at 54M) is compli- mentary throughout the entire facility, and the center’s new website offers event-service ordering, payment options,web- cast hosting, detailed event schedule pages, an expanded
NEWSTART: Since 2010, SMG and Centerplate have taken over managing Cobo Center’s operations and catering. The new teams are another step toward increasing the center’s viability and competitiveness through new financial opportunities and decreased costs.