Sports, entertainment venues need engineering athleticism


CSE: Owners often like to make their venues multi-use facilities. What unique engineering issues do you encounter with these facilities, and how do you overcome them?

McKinlay: For multi-use facilities the building systems need to flexible in capacity and adaptable to serve many different demands depending on the event. One of the key issues is acoustics in terms of intelligibility of public address systems, but also the sense of “liveliness” that audiences expect at any public event. For example, a venue may need to sound quiet for a small concert but then need to have a festive roar during a basketball game. You need the space to be tune-able, but that means every system needs to support that tune-ability. Often, systems for acoustics and sound, fire management, lighting, and climate control need to be considered holistically from an integrated approach in order to accommodate several different potential configurations for a venue. Arup has always worked with an integrated approach, so we overcome a lot of what might be considered obstacles for some design teams just through the nature of how we work, getting everyone at the table throughout the process.

Lewis: The most important factor for design is understanding the owner’s requirements. If for some reason we’re working with an owner who is new to these types of facilities, we really strive to educate the team on what is typically provided in these facilities to allow them to truly be multi-purpose buildings. The biggest issue is really the simplest, and that is to keep in mind that flexibility in all systems is paramount. At HEI we like to keep up to date on the latest trends and emerging technology to verify our designs are not short-sighted and that we have capacity in all systems for growth.

Larwood: The MEP systems are a huge contributor to delivering flexibility. Whether it’s exhaust systems for pyrotechnic shows or creating the optimal air conditions for premium ice quality for hockey, significant planning goes into the systems design. Of course, reliability of the systems is paramount, and oftentimes the electrical service will be provided from two separate sources to minimize the possibility of a power outage. Every building is unique, and the solutions, though often drawn from similar past projects, are also always unique.

Cooper: System requirements can become really interesting when a space will be used for a basketball game one day, a concert the next, and a presidential debate the following week. In order to provide the necessary solutions, we have to understand the current needs of today’s typical touring band, the requirements for a national TV broadcast, etc. You can’t just request these requirements, as the information you will get is often extremely conservative and will result in grossly oversized systems. You really need to understand the equipment and the operations of the multiple “tenants” that may use the facility. There has to be a balancing act between permanent and portable infrastructure. One use that we see being considered on many projects is the potential for the building becoming an emergency shelter for the surrounding community. The facility may be looked to for beds, heat, showers, food service, emergency operations headquarters, etc. The emergency power arrangement of the facility can be drastically affected by these requirements, and one requirement may have a domino effect that requires far more system modifications than first imagined. Again, a balance must be struck between significant system modifications, the likelihood of certain scenarios, and the viability of relying on portable or temporary accommodations to provide the desired services.

Evans: Most of the facilities I mentioned previously have multiple uses. Not only do they accommodate a number of different sporting and entertainment venues, they also are frequently used for trade shows that can include multi-level booths, as well as motor home and boat shows. These uses substantially change the fuel load within the facility and must be taken into account during the initial design phase. The infield of the Speedway is used for concerts and has accommodated upwards of 300,000 attendees, which substantially revises the egress requirements.

<< First < Previous 1 2 3 Next > Last >>

No comments
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2013 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
A cool solution: Collaboration, chemistry leads to foundry coat product development; See the 2015 Product of the Year Finalists
Raising the standard: What's new with NFPA 70E; A global view of manufacturing; Maintenance data; Fit bearings properly
Sister act: Building on their father's legacy, a new generation moves Bales Metal Surface Solutions forward; Meet the 2015 Engineering Leaders Under 40
Cyber security cost-efficient for industrial control systems; Extracting full value from operational data; Managing cyber security risks
Drilling for Big Data: Managing the flow of information; Big data drilldown series: Challenge and opportunity; OT to IT: Creating a circle of improvement; Industry loses best workers, again
Pipeline vulnerabilities? Securing hydrocarbon transit; Predictive analytics hit the mainstream; Dirty pipelines decrease flow, production—pig your line; Ensuring pipeline physical and cyber security
Upgrading secondary control systems; Keeping enclosures conditioned; Diagnostics increase equipment uptime; Mechatronics simplifies machine design
Designing positive-energy buildings; Ensuring power quality; Complying with NFPA 110; Minimizing arc flash hazards
Building high availability into industrial computers; Of key metrics and myth busting; The truth about five common VFD myths

Annual Salary Survey

After almost a decade of uncertainty, the confidence of plant floor managers is soaring. Even with a number of challenges and while implementing new technologies, there is a renewed sense of optimism among plant managers about their business and their future.

The respondents to the 2014 Plant Engineering Salary Survey come from throughout the U.S. and serve a variety of industries, but they are uniform in their optimism about manufacturing. This year’s survey found 79% consider manufacturing a secure career. That’s up from 75% in 2013 and significantly higher than the 63% figure when Plant Engineering first started asking that question a decade ago.

Read more: 2014 Salary Survey: Confidence rises amid the challenges

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.