Mercedes Benz Stadium

Location:

Atlanta, GA
 

Precaster:

(Architectural Components) Gate Precast Co.,
Monroeville, AL
(Structural Components) Metromont, Hiram, GA
(AASHtO Beams) Standard Concrete Products, Columbus, GA
 

Owner:

Georgia World Congress Center Authority, Atlanta, GA
 

Architect:

360 Architecture (now part of HOK), Kansas City, MO
 

Engineer of Record:

Sykes Consulting Inc.
 

Contractor:

Holder/Hunt/Russell/Moody J.V., Atlanta, GA
 

Project Scope

Structural Precast Elements:

501,222 square feet of structural precast concrete components, including:
• 375,039 square feet of stadia (1,396 tread and riser pieces) comprising 293 double units, 991 triple units, and 112 tub units, with front-row units stubbed to receive handrails
• 8,126 square feet (220 pieces) of raker beams used in the lower bowl
• 83,378 square feet (650 pieces) of wall panels
• 165 columns to support raker beams and other structures
• Precast erected in two phase of four months and six weeks
• 37 AASHTO Type IV prestressed concrete girders for the plaza, varying in length from 13 to 126 feet.
 

Architectural Precast Elements:

• 310 architectural precast concrete panels encompassing 91,000 square feet.
- Largest panels measured 13’-9” x 40”-10” and weighed more than 59,000 pounds, with 76 panels in all weighing more than 56,000 pounds.
- 12-inch-thick panels feature 3 inches of rigid glass polyisocyanurate insulation sandwiched between a 4-inch-thick architectural exterior panel and a 5-inch-thick interior layer.
- Two finishes were used with one concrete mix, a light brush-blast finish and a heavy sandblast finish.
 

Precast Erector:

Precision Stone, Hiram, GA
 

Resources

 
 
 
 
 
 
Mercedes Benz Stadium
Mercedes Benz Stadium
Mercedes Benz Stadium
Mercedes Benz Stadium
Mercedes Benz Stadium
Mercedes Benz Stadium
Mercedes Benz Stadium
Mercedes Benz Stadium
Mercedes Benz Stadium
Mercedes Benz Stadium
Mercedes Benz Stadium
Mercedes Benz Stadium
Mercedes Benz Stadium
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Project Overview

The Atlanta Falcons’ new 2-million-square-foot football home, Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta, features a variety of innovations that set the benchmark for future stadium designs.

One of its foremost innovations is the movable roof that opens and closes like the aperture of a camera.

The team at HOK, the architectural firm (via its acquisition of 360 Architecture), was inspired by the way sunlight passes through the oculus in the roof of the Pantheon in Rome, a spokesperson said. It consists of eight triangular-shaped panels made of ethylene tetrafluoroethylene (ETFE) that move along 16 tracks.

ETFE panels also were used to clad the angular, wing-like exterior sections to continue the design from the roof, the spokesperson said. “The transparency creates a 16-story ‘window to the city’ that draws in daylight and offers panoramic views of Atlanta’s skyline.” A video board wraps around the perimeter of the stadium at the roofline, providing high-definition images from anywhere in the stadium.

Precast Solution

A key ingredient in making the stadium comfortable for fans while ensuring it was ready on time was the use of more than half a million square feet of structural precast concrete components, along with architectural precast concrete panels, and bridge girders that help support the plaza around the stadium.

For the stadium façade, Gate Precast Co. provided 310 panels encompassing 91,000 square feet. The largest panel measured 13’-9” x 40”-10” and weighed more than 59,000 pounds, with 76 panels in all weighing more than 56,000 pounds. The 12-inch-thick panels were insulated with 3 inches of rigid glass polyisocyanurate insulation sandwiched between a 4-inch-thick architectural exterior panel and a 5-inch-thick interior layer.

The panels feature one concrete mix and two finishes, comprising a light brush-blast and a heavy sandblast, according to Clay Hudson, project manager at Gate. “The two finishes created the color variance desired by the architect,” Hudson said. The light brush-blast provided a darker gray tone, while the heavy sandblast created a lighter gray color.

Precision Stone Setting Company provided a seven man crew and performed the erection at night to maintain the architectural precast schedule. “Maintaining the skin schedule was a major key in opening up the interior areas so the general contractor could begin finish work on the inside of the stadium,” Hudson says.

Gate also supplied caulk sealant for the architectural panel joints and a water/graffiti repellant, which was applied by TCM Waterproofing after the panels were erected. Both the erector and waterproofer assisted in meeting the Emerging Business Organization (EBO) requirements and goals set forth by the owners.

Seating Configurations
A variety of seating options were created at different pricing levels, vantage points, and service levels. Amenities include a row of concession stands, bookended by bars, that stretches the length of the field. The stadium was designed to be easily reconfigured to accommodate other events, including the Atlanta United soccer team and championship events such as the Super Bowl, NCAA Men’s Basketball Final, and concerts. Retractable seating surrounds the field, with a motorized curtain system ensuring soccer fans are seated close to the action.

The primary use of precast concrete structural components came in the 1,396 pieces of stadia (tread and risers), representing 375,039 square feet of material, that form the platform for the molded-plastic seats used throughout the seating areas. The stadia comprise 293 double units, 991 triple units, and 112 tub units. Metromont Corp. fabricated the structural precast concrete components.

The stadia in the lower bowl are supported by 220 raker beams totaling 8,126 square feet of material. A total of 165 precast columns support the raker beams and other structures. A total of 650 wall panels, covering 87,378 square feet, were used extensively throughout the stadium, including concourses and service areas.

All 157 stair units were configured as precast concrete stair and landing pieces, totaling 26,528 square feet. In addition to moving by stairs, fans also have access to two sets of ramps, 20 escalators and 24 elevators.

AASHTO Beams Support Plaza
Meanwhile, Standard Concrete Products cast 37 AASHTO Type IV prestressed concrete girders for the plaza. They varied in length from 13 to 126 feet, with only five offering similar loading and length, according to Richard Potts, vice president of engineering.

The girders were used due to the long spans needed and the “ugly geometry” at the site, he explains. “It was a nightmare to calculate all of the loads needed to span that space.” Standard has used the girders in similar applications, he notes, including for walkways and pedestrian bridges, but none were as extensive or elaborate.

The I-beam shape was 54 inches tall and weighed 822 pounds per linear foot. Nine of the girders were custom lengths while all but eight have varying cantilevers involved. Standard also was required to do associated designs for components that would be supported or connected to the products to ensure close tolerances. As part of that, the original concrete diaphragms were changed to metal.”

“There were a host of change orders as new issues arose,” he says. “So much of the design was dependent on other elements that when one part changed, it caused hiccups that had to be addressed throughout the structure.” Addressing natural camber and bearing points were key issues that had to be watched carefully as design adjustments were made.

Erection On Critical Path
“Erection of the precast always was on the critical path for the completion of the stadium, and plant production was geared to make all the key completion dates,” says George Spence, business development manager at Metromont.

The upper bowl and club-level erections were completed on schedule, but delays in completing the new roof concept set back the lower-bowl erection four months before crews gained access to mobilize and erect those portions. Once steel framing was completed, the precast team used six crews to work around the clock for 45 straight days to set the precast components. “This effort put the project back onto its revised schedule,” says Spence.

A total of 1,500 pieces were set in this 45-day period, including setting raker beams as heavy as 81,125 pounds. “This was unprecedented speed in the precast industry,” Spence says. “Without this Herculean effort, the stadium would not have opened on time.”

But it did open on time, on August 26, 2017, with all seating in place and a roof that has set the standard for future design concepts. In addition, the stadium is the first to achieve LEED Platinum certification, garnering 88 points. The precast concrete components helped reach that total through a variety of attributes, including use of local materials, local manufacture, and reduction of construction waste.

 
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