Cobo Center is one of the largest convention centers in the nation. Built by the City of Detroit, it was originally opened in 1960 and named Cobo Hall in honor of former Detroit Mayor Albert E. Cobo (1950-1957).

The DRCFA is currently overseeing a $299 million expansion and upgrade of Cobo Center that is scheduled for completion in January 2015.

In October 2010, the DRCFA awarded the contract for operations management of Cobo Center to SMG, the world leader in venue management, marketing and development. The success of this new contract is seen in the fact that on January 5, 2012, senior officials for the DRCFA and the NAIAS signed an unprecedented five-year contract that keeps the auto show in the Motor City through 2017.