$100 Million Improvements To Ford Field Include Gigantic Videoboards, New Sound System [PHOTOS]

DETROIT (CBS Detroit/AP) – The Detroit Lions have begun a $100 million renovation to spruce up Ford Field, a project that’s scheduled to be completed before next season starts.

Team president Rod Wood says the 15-year-old stadium was due for a significant upgrade. He says the improvements will make the facility ready to host another Super Bowl. Pittsburgh beat Seattle to win a Super Bowl at Ford Field in February 2006.

“The Ford Family is making a substantial investment to make sure our stadium remains among the best, but ultimately it’s still about winning football games,” Wood said in a statement. “We want to get fans in the building having a great time and excited about what they’re experiencing so that they can continue to help us create a home field advantage.”

The highlight of the changes may be the 152-foot wide videoboards above each end zone that will rank among the ten largest in the NFL after the original ones were among the league’s smallest last season. The Lions are also renovating 210,000 square feet of space throughout the facility, including its suites and club seats.

New suites at Ford Field (Photo courtesy: Detroit Lions)

New suites at Ford Field (Photo courtesy: Detroit Lions)

New Daktronics Displays and Ribbon Boards

In each end zone, the Daktronics main video displays will be more than twice the size of the current displays and measure 39.5 feet high by 152 feet wide. Flanking the main displays will be four additional displays measuring 13 feet high by 59 feet wide that can be used individually or coordinated with the main displays for one continuous 270-foot presentation to show live video, instant replays, statistics, graphics and animations, and sponsorship messages. All five of the displays will feature a 13HD pixel layout, Daktronics’ premier technology, to ensure vibrant, crisp imagery with wide angle visibility.

New videoboards (Photo courtesy: Detroit Lions)

New videoboards (Photo courtesy: Detroit Lions)

Additionally, there will be displays mounted to Ford Field’s super columns and ribbon boards mounted along the fascia of Gate A and the main seating bowl. The team worked closely with Daktronics to identify the largest size and best options given the stadium structure.

Complete Installation of Meyer Sound System

Prior to the 2016 regular season, the team partnered with Meyer Sound to make temporary improvements to Ford Field’s sound system. In the coming months, they will install the full LEO Family Linear Sound Reinforcement System to replace the original stadium sound system in its entirety.

It will feature eight array clusters with 182 separate loudspeakers, including:
• 42 LEO-M loudspeakers
• 60 LYON loudspeakers
• 24 JM-1P loudspeakers
• 18 UPQ loudspeakers
• 24 high powered 1100LFC subwoofers
• 14 Galileo Galaxy processors – their first fully networkable loudspeaker processor that harnesses open-source AVB technology to extend new levels of audio control which drives and aligns loudspeaker systems in multiple zones.

The LEO Family system is Meyer Sound’s flagship line array solution and boasts premium quality sound with astonishing throw, ultra-low distortion, increased intelligibility and significantly more coverage.

New and Renovated Areas

The Lions consulted with Rossetti – the original architectural firm for Ford Field – and identified opportunities to renovate areas of the stadium to enhance and modernize the guest experience as well as better utilize the existing space. A total of 210,000 square feet, ranging from large social areas and clubs to suites and loges, will be renovated in place or completely reconfigured.

New Corner Bar at Ford Field (Photo courtesy: Detroit Lions)

New Corner Bar at Ford Field (Photo courtesy: Detroit Lions)

The renovations will include:
• Complete suite renovations with two levels of finishes, identified as the Red Zone suites and the 20’s suites
• Redesign and re-brand of The Corner Lounge which will become Corner Bar and celebrate great players from the franchise’s past and present
• New concept club with communal experience and no assigned seating
• Renovated current and addition of new spaces (Grid Iron Club and Terrace Suite) for suite and club members on the north side of stadium
• Fully updated club space on the south side (currently Huntington Club) of stadium that will feature addition of Loge box seating

“The design elements converge throughout the renovated areas to acknowledge the drive and dedication of the team, the loyalty of its fans and the culture of Detroit,” Kirk Phillips, Design Lead at Rossetti, said in a statement. “We were especially inspired by the urban environment in the neighborhood and used the lighting, materiality, and details to create a new experience that will be completely different for fans.”

TM and © Copyright 2017 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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