Jekyll Island Breaks Ground on Georgia's Newest Convention Center

During a Dec. 7 groundbreaking ceremony attended by state and community leaders, crews commenced work on a new convention center in Jekyll Island, Ga., the Jekyll Island Authority (JIA) announced last week.

One of several revitalization projects that are planned for Jekyll Island — which is located off Georgia's southern coast, between Savannah and Jacksonville — the convention center will boast 128,000 square feet of meeting space as well as several green features that are expected to earn it LEED Silver certification.

Replacing an older facility, the new convention center will be the only oceanfront convention center in the Southeast, expected to open in 2012 along with two new hotels, 40,000 square feet of retail space and a new 20-acre park — all part of a new Jekyll Island Beach Village development.

"The revitalization of Jekyll Island is a story of renewal — of restoring the island to its rightful place as a premier public beach resort available to all Georgians and visitors," said Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue. "This project is already benefiting a reinvigorated coastal Georgia economy, and I look forward to seeing the finished product thanks to the hard work and dedication the Jekyll Island Authority Board of Directors and the Jekyll Island Authority staff have invested in this effort."

According to JIA, the facility will be integrated into its natural beachfront location in a manner that "minimizes impact on the environment while creating a wonderful and unique guest experience."

"We cannot be more excited to embark on this monumental project for Jekyll Island," said JIA Chairman Bob Krueger. "My hope is for the new convention center to create a wealth of special memories just as the former has done for so many visitors and residents alike."