Mar 19, 2008

Atlanta’s Georgia World Congress Center Optimistic About Quick Recovery

Site of ACE08 “well on the road to recovery”

After a March 14 tornado struck the Georgia World Congress Center (GWCC), home of the American Water Works Association's (AWWA) June 8 to 12 Annual Conference and Exposition (ACE08) in Atlanta, the facility's general manager released a statement noting that "we are well on the road to recovery and optimistic about the future."

"We expect a fantastic experience at ACE08 in Atlanta," said AWWA Executive Director Gary Zimmerman. "All indications are that the downtown area is recovering quickly from the storm."

In a letter to customers, GWCC's Mark Zimmerman notes that crews have embarked on repairs as engineers continue to assess the extent of the damage. Meanwhile, a force of between 500 and 1,000 workers has been cleaning up the center since Saturday in order to assure the facility's safety.

AWWA is communicating regularly with GWCC and will continue to pass along updated information at Updates from the convention center are also available at

Omni Hotel at CNN Center, headquarters hotel for ACE08, also experienced damage to one of its towers. The hotel remains open as affected areas undergo cleanup from broken glass and water damage.

Spurgeon Richardson, president and CEO of the Atlanta Visitor & Convention Bureau, reported that all Atlanta's attractions are open for business and fewer than 600 of the city's 92,000 hotel rooms were closed for repairs. "We anticipate that the remaining rooms will be repaired and will once again be occupied by customers in just two weeks," Richardson said.