Cobo Center Capital Improvement Program 2010-2015
To see the Cobo Center renovation at a glance click here
Starting in 2011 and concluding in 2015, Cobo Center has undergone a transformation to serve the needs of its global customers and drive the economy of Metro Detroit.
Cobo Center became more accessible, more spacious, and more efficient in its use of space. It now takes advantage of its anchor position on an international border and as a showpiece of a vibrant downtown.
From the exterior, the changes to Cobo Center are striking. Along the river, around the Grand Riverview Ballroom and along the main façade, glass, light and openness bring the city into Cobo as never before. Multiple new entrances, increased parking, and improved traffic flow enhance the visitor experience. And everyone will pause to admire the most striking additions to Cobo’s exterior – a massive high-tech digital video grids that promote events and excitement while adding a signature element to Detroit’s downtown skyline.
But it’s what’s happening inside Cobo, that’s even more exciting. The main concourse is opened up to improve interior traffic flow, while a new food court is already drawing rave reviews. Most significantly, a facility that never had a unique, definitive focal point now will, in the form of a new three-story atrium opening onto the Detroit River.
This new space connects Cobo to the riverfront, connects the existing concourse level to the lower-level convention hall and enables one of the other major reinventions of Cobo Center’s existing footprint.
Cobo Arena, once one of Detroit’s premier sports and entertainment venues, is finding a new life as part of Cobo Center’s transformation.
In its new form, it has become the region’s premier banquet and event space, complete with a lift stage to allow for dramatic vehicle introductions rising from the floor below. Downtown Detroit is the backdrop through a giant glass wall and terrace. The glass-enclosed pre-function space to the south offers panoramic views of both the Detroit River and our international neighbors in Windsor, Ontario. On the lower level, additional meeting and breakout rooms support a variety of events, providing convention and event organizers with new, exciting options for their attendees.
On the other side of the new atrium, existing meeting and conference areas are also re-invented to meet the needs of today’s event planners and their guests for more flexible and efficient spaces. Walls became windows, celebrating Detroit’s historic relationship with its river and its key position on an international border. This redesign offers new options for pre-function activities in a dramatic environment, and the rooms themselves are renovated to meet the needs of today’s digital and connected attendee for flexible and effective work and meeting spaces.
The new atrium also provides Cobo Center with something it never had before – a new entrance and traffic flow that not only brings in the riverfront, but also creates a natural flow into the lower-level exhibition spaces that have been an afterthought for convention planners for decades. The reinvention of this existing space has the effect of adding nearly 100,000 square feet of easily accessible prime show floor space to any major event, plus the availability of the new banquet and meeting facility across the atrium. When combined with the additional 25,000 square feet of new show floor on the first level, Cobo Center has the capability to host most of the world’s largest conventions.
Larger. More efficient. More effective. More responsive. The new Cobo Center – More than you ever imagined.