The Pantheon-inspired retractable roof, 360° video board, and 1800 wireless access points are only a few of the factors that make Mercedes-Benz Stadium one of the most technologically advanced sports venues on the planet.
Arthur Blank’s vision during the conceptualization of the stadium was to provide the ultimate family and sporting experience. Fans of the Atlanta Falcons, Atlanta United and anyone else lucky enough to visit the new stadium will certainly not be disappointed.
The retractable roof of Mercedes-Benz Stadium is one of a kind. It is comprised of eight “petals” that weigh 500 tons each. The petals form a watertight seal when the roof is closed, yet allow natural sunlight to illuminate the stadium via ethylene tetrafluoroethylene, or ETFE. ETFE is a durable plastic that is translucent, which allows for optimal lighting during games, as well as protection from inclement weather. When the petals open and close, they give the illusion that they are rotating, when in fact, the petals are moving in a straight line.
South Dakota-based Daktronics was commissioned to build the first ever 360° video board. The “halo board” is 58 feet by 1,100 feet, and weighs 500 tons. The board can be viewed from every seat within the stadium. It can also be synced with the other 8,000 square feet of LED displays throughout the stadium to simultaneously broadcast highlights, replays, and advertisements. Accompanying the halo board is a 101-foot tall, three-sided video board located at the main entrance of the stadium. This board is used to display unique team content. Mike Gomes, the Senior Vice President of Fan Experience, says, “When Julio Jones scores a touchdown, and his likeness is displayed on this board, he’s going to be 100 feet tall. It’s amazing.”
AMB Sports and Entertainment adopted the concept “connectivity” when developing its plan for an exhilarating fan experience. To support this concept, 1,000 wireless access points were placed inside of the stadium seating areas. Another 800 were placed in the concourses and outside of the stadium. There are technology loge suites throughout the stadium, equipped with televisions, iPads, and wireless cell phone chargers. 2,500 televisions are also located within the stadium. Apps for the Falcons, Atlanta United, and Mercedes-Benz further the fan experience by providing directions to seating, allowing fans to locate and pay for parking, and providing the means to submit and pay for food orders.
In addition to Falcons and United games, the stadium is also scheduled to host several major sporting events in the near future including, the Super Bowl in 2019, the NCAA Men’s Final Four in 2020 and the 2018 College Football Playoff Championship game.
Visitors of the Mercedes-Benz Stadium will witness a technologically advanced sports and entertainment experience unlike any other. Now if they could only convince the stadium’s Chik-Fil-A location to open on Sundays.