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Upgraded to suit modern patrons’ needs, the historic Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum officially reopens

Jackie Wei-Green Jackie Wei Green Senior Communications Leader,Los Angeles
19 August 2019

Arup provided multidisciplinary expertise to prepare the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum for the future through upgraded amenities and improved services

On August 19, the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum officially reopened to the public, revealing major upgrades that will improve patron experience. After serving generations of Angelenos for almost 100 years, the University of Southern California (USC) sought to provide an upgraded fan experience and modernize the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. 

In partnership with USC and DLR Group, Arup provided a variety of multidisciplinary engineering services including upgrading the historic stadium’s existing technology, audiovisual components, and WiFi coverage, as well as bringing a new seven-story Scholarship Club tower to life with improved services and seating, new suites and an upgraded press box. The tower will be a major revenue generator, providing exceptional experiences through full-service kitchens and premium seating.

Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum
On August 19, the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum officially reopened to the public, revealing major upgrades that will improve patron experience.

The close collaboration between our multidisciplinary design teams and USC enabled this project to seamlessly come to life. We are proud to have contributed to the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum’s revitalization and shape the future of this iconic Los Angeles landmark. ”

Arup Fellow Erin McConahey Erin McConahey Arup Fellow and Project Director

As reliable WiFi and cellular coverage are often lacking in college sporting venues, Arup’s design team sought to provide an exceptional wireless and cellular experience for the entire stadium. Facing a series of design challenges, including maintaining the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum’s historic façade and character, Arup implemented a series of innovation solutions. These included finding less conspicuous locations to mount wireless access points by placing them around lights, ultimately eliminating the need to mount objects on the historic façade. The team also implemented a bowl-wide under-seat WiFi coverage method that mitigated the issue of interference caused by the slope and incline of the stadium’s bowl. To best ensure that the wireless and cellular infrastructure was flexible, Arup provided technology consulting services that enabled USC to unite a previously siloed network and operate different systems from one converged network.

Arup provided mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP), information technology and communications (IT&C), audio-visual (AV) and acoustics services on the Coliseum’s new Scholarship Club Tower. Arup collaborated with the full design and construction team to protect an optimized line of sight for fans, overcoming the constraints of the new tower’s short floor-to-floor heights and a non-vertically stacked building design. The need for ventilation ducts and piping to support numerous full-service kitchens resulted in a compact services-intensive system that required intense collaboration with the design and contracting team.

Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum interior Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum interior
Arup provided a variety of multidisciplinary engineering services including upgrading the historic stadium’s existing technology, audiovisual components, and WiFi coverage, as well as bringing a new seven-story Scholarship Club tower to life with improved services and seating, new suites and an upgraded press box.

DLR Group’s design solution restores the Coliseum’s standing as a viable public asset for the next century while respecting its past. The new Scholarship Tower impacts less than 15 percent of the existing seating bowl and positions premium seating closer to the field, creating some of the best views in college football. ”

Don Barnum, AIA Principal and Leader of DLR Group's Sports Studio

To ensure that the fan experience was optimized both for patrons of the stadium as well as those viewing games and concerts remotely, Arup provided AV services for the whole stadium, including the sophisticated modern press box inside the Scholarship Club Tower. As there is a high intensity of broadcast services necessary to make the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum operational during large events, Arup delivered an upgraded control room and production and broadcast facilities. These new facilities will meet the video capture criteria needs of different types of broadcast networks. In addition, Arup upgraded the Coliseum’s audiovisual components, providing new scoreboards, game clocks, timers, and ribbon boards, as well as new displays and speakers. Undergirding all of the technology improvements was a significant electrical system upgrade to improve reliability and capacity.

The grand reopening kicks off the beginning of the 2019/2020 football season, with the first USC game on August 31 and the first Rams game on August 24. 

Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum
We also collaborated with the full design and construction team to protect an optimized line of sight for fans.