Final Countdown for Georgia Dome


I will always think fondly of the days when Worlds was held in the dome.

Even with the mile walk from the pits to the field. LOL

For a freshman media person, doing a 4:30 walk through a semi-lit tunnel and coming out to a gigantic dome full of FIRST fans leaves one heck of an impression.

St. Louis might have been the following 7 Championships, but 2010 Atlanta was my first, and boy did it hook me good.

Same. Every match was like the calm before the storm making that walk. I also enjoyed the lighting a lot better back then. I’m not too big of a fan of the dim lighting in the stands.

Good memories from The Dome. My 1st Champs was with Buzz 175 as their truck driver in 2004. (I think I had 5 CT teams on UTC Space Station truck that year) Crossed stage as Curie winner and have been to every Champs since. Started inspecting robots the following year.


I like how it’s being converted to a green space. Maybe they’ll even let robots on that grass (too soon?).

There is a hole in the ground where the Ga Dome use to be…

Perhaps this info has already been provided here but if not, tune in on Monday morning a little after 7am EST. Many different links are available if you scroll down a little on this WSB-TVweb page.

Being a local Atlanta guy, I sure enjoyed attending First and other events at the GA Dome since it opened in 1992 at a cost of $214mil. They have hosted 2 Super Bowls, 3 Final Fours, the '96 Olympics and a 2008 tornado. First Championships were still held the next month and were at the Dome from 2004-2010.

Following the implosion and debris removal a park will sit on those grounds.

A nice and colorful review of the GA Dome’s events can be found here.

I’ve been to a few events next door at Mercedes Benz stadium ($1.5bill) and it’s obviously a beautiful place.

We certainly hope that “The Benz” will make it thru the GA Dome implosion as they are only about 80’ apart.


I am going to miss that place. My first Championships experience was in 2005 at the dome. It set a life changing impression on me that really hooked me into FIRST.

I still feel that it was the best venue that they have had for Championships. It was located walking distance from many hotels, MARTA, the Aquarium, World of Coca-Cola, CNN Center, and Olympic Park. It was a perfect layout for large groups of students to have places to eat and things to do. Also having all the fields in the dome really made it feel like you were at the world Championships. I hope some day we can get back there.

So many great memories of that place. Too many to list so I’ll just share a couple.

That first ever walk onto the floor at champs. Mine was 2007 as drive coach with my son as driver.

Being in the stands when Chris Fultz received the Woodie Flowers award. First time I had tears in my eyes at a FIRST event.

I graduate college in that dome. Sigh.

Unless you were late. :smiley:

Like the others in this thread and tens of thousands of FIRSTers, I have many fond memories of the Georgia Dome. From walking onto the field in awe for our first practice match in 2004 to leaving with my head down after losing on Einstein in 2010 it was quite the journey. Still pretty cool think that we won a World Championship in the same building where Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith and Michael Irvin won a Super Bowl, and where Shaq, Hakeem Olajuwon, and Kerri Strug won Olympic Gold Medals.

John won his Championship Woodie Flowers Award there in 2009. (My profile pic) Great memories.


First went there in 2004, FIRST Frenzy, one of the great games.

Such cool engineering readily visible from above:

Such a great venue for all fields. Natural sunlight filtered in.

Yes, these pictures are from 2007, Lunacy. No disparaging comments please. Great Game Theory and static electricity to boot. :slight_smile:

So sad that the timelines of modern structures has become so short.

GWB: “This is like WWF for smart people”. Possibly better than #TSIMFD

The after champs party from 2010…

It will be sad to see it go. I remember my first year there in 2005 as a rookie mentor. We didn’t do very well there that year, but I left understanding why I decided to mentor. It was definitely more than the robots… it was the community. As the years went on we were proud to win the FTC crown in 2008 and then the final FRC championships in Atlanta in 2010. I have so many great memories and I know my students left with a lasting impression each year.

After the walk from the pits to the field in Houston,1 I was relieved at the relative lack of elevation change in Atlanta. It was a pleasant venue.

However, pleasant isn’t how I would describe the process of replacing it. The Georgia Dome was a stadium with plenty of life left—sure, it was hard to use as a marketing vehicle (and admittedly, that’s worth something), but it was built to reasonably modern standards, and was not overly hard to maintain (despite the roof issues), nor was it hard to fill with spectators during the short NFL season and occasional special event. But for $700 million in public subsidies, plus $900 million in private funds](, the city of Atlanta will now have a stadium of about the same capacity, still separated from Downtown by a cavernous convention centre and literally on the wrong side of the tracks. But at least now it will have a sad excuse for a park beside it.

There’s no good plan for the public investment to be recouped, and no reasonable prospect of making the stadium the centre of improved development, except for the proposed hotel on site. Nobody wants to move in beside a football stadium, because unlike a baseball stadium, nothing happens there most of the year. What’s more, with the bowl seating and tiny orifice of a retractable roof, the sights and sounds of the game aren’t going to get out and enhance the streetscape anyway.

And for those who already live in the area—predominantly low-income households—they don’t get a damned thing in return. The park, sponsored prominently by Home Depot, is actually conceived as a parking lot for tailgaters, and will look like a muddy mess when they’re through with it. You simply can’t make that space usefully available as a community park when it’s going to have hundreds of cars tearing it up every couple of weeks.

It’s the worst kind of regulatory capture, when the governing bodies with jurisdiction are so star-struck by the prospect of their team getting something shiny and new, that they abandon all sense of public fiscal responsibility in the vain hope that it will bring Atlanta a championship.

1 The first time in Houston, meaning the pits were in the bottom of the Astrodome, and the fields were several storeys above on the floor of Reliant Stadium.

I love seeing pictures of our team from years ago. That was our first HoF trip to CMP, I can only imagine how hyped those kids were.

For those that were around when the Georgia Dome was the glory of the FIRST Championship… as of 7:30 this morning, it is gone: