Fairgrounds Nashville Improvement Project Update: December 7, 2018 Update

December 7, 2018

Mayor David Briley and Council Member Colby Sledge joined the Board of Fair Commissioners to break ground on the new Fairgrounds exposition facilities approved by Metro Council in September. The modernized facilities include indoor exposition spaces, staff offices, kitchen and café, outdoor sheds, and an arena. The project is scheduled to be completed summer of 2019.

“Today is an important step forward in what will soon be brand-new and modern expo facilities at the Fairgrounds,” said Mayor David Briley. “It’s taken a lot work to get to this point, and I am thankful to all involved who have gotten us to this day.”

The indoor exposition space is constructed of three pre-engineered buildings with total square footage of more than 130,000 square feet. The buildings will be surrounded by canopies reminiscent of a “front porch” that will provide a unique covered vendor space.

Fairgrounds offices, including a customer service counter for Flea Market, will be located at the southeast corner of the complex. All restrooms will be accessible from inside and outside of the buildings.

Two 60’ x 360’ sheds will double as covered parking during events that don’t require use of the sheds. A large arena to the west of the exposition center will support fair activities, Flea Market, and other outdoor events, such as rodeos.

“This day marks the next evolution of the Fairgrounds that will secure a vibrant future for the property for generations to come,” said Laura Womack, executive director of The Fairgrounds Nashville.

Each facility is designed with a multitude of uses in mind. The fairgrounds has been known for its flexibility, affordability and broad offerings that appeal to all ages, and the property has long hosted events as diverse as Flea Market to livestock shows to banquets.

“The Fair Board has been working for decades to secure funding for meaningful improvements,” Fair Board Chair Ned Horton said. “These improvements will assist this important Metro asset in broadening the event schedule while continuing to provide excellent service to existing uses.”

Site and building designs are being finalized with the project management team. A User Advisory Committee, with representatives from the Flea Market vendors, Speedway, State Fair, expo events and consumer shows, indoor sports, advocacy groups, and neighbors, has been assisting the project team with design considerations. The group will continue to meet through construction of the city-owned MLS stadium to assist with logistics and operational planning.