Atlanta Hawks to Turn Arena Into Election Polling Station

State Farm Arena will first be used in Georgia's primary runoff election on August 11

Atlanta Hawks to Turn Arena Into Election Polling Station
Overhead shot from center court at Philips Arena on May 20, 2015. (Mike Zarrilli/Getty)
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To help assist with any potential issues with upcoming elections in Georgia’s Fulton County, the Atlanta Hawks have gotten official approval to make State Farm Arena available as the largest polling station in state history.

Thanks to that move, registered voters will be able to head to the arena to cast their ballots in Georgia’s primary runoff election on August 11 and to file early votes for the general election scheduled for November 3.

Hundred of arena staffers will now be able to work as volunteer poll workers and several team-controlled billboards will push “get out the vote” messages starting in July. In another nice touch, parking around the area will be free for voters.

Conversations between Hawks head coach Lloyd Pierce, CEO Steve Koonin and majority owner Antony Ressler hatched the idea of turning the 700,000-square-foot venue into a massive polling station, according to ESPN.

“We aim to be a community asset, and in order to fulfill that goal, we need to be more than just a basketball team,” Koonin said during a Monday press conference. “We’ll utilize our arena for all aspects of voting.”

At the presser, Pierce said he plans to challenge the other 29 NBA head coaches to become more active in encouraging their local communities to get out and vote.

“I’m encouraged by us being the model for voting, us being the leader in making this a reality and then us leading the charge in getting the rest of our country to encourage voting,” he said.

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