Text description provided by the architects. Completed this fall, the 125,000 square foot, 8,125-seat Grandstand Stadium is an innovative, lightweight structure that anchors the southwest corner of the United States Tennis Association’s (USTA) National Tennis Center in New York City. Since 2010, ROSSETTI and the USTA have collaborated on redesigning the 46-acre campus for the future of tennis, and expect to complete the final phase for the 2018 US Open.
Relocated from the crowded northeast corner of the campus, the new Grandstand Stadium nestles into the natural setting of Flushing Meadows Corona Park; the trees along the campus edge inspire its unique exterior skin pattern that metaphorically evokes the illusion of peering through the foliage of leaves.
Teflon-coated fiberglass membrane, or polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE)”) fabric, the hexadecagon (16-sided) facade is composed of 486 panels, over 26,000 square feet, that were designed using Computational Solver software. The complex geometry of the panels is synthesized while taking advantage of the material play on opacity and translucency, offering glimpses into and out of the stadium.
From the ground, fans are drawn into the Grandstand Stadium from multiple staircases alongside the structure. Along the upper walkway, visitors enjoy expansive views of the campus and park, including the new Allée, which connects to the historic World’s Fair Unisphere. Its strategic design allows people to move freely along the perimeter of the stadium while staying underneath the translucent canopy overhead.
The fan experience includes a lower bowl recessed into the earth, to maintain scalability, which creates the ultimate tennis experience that highlights the player-fan relationship. New concessions, a picnic area and plazas surround the Grandstand Stadium and provide fans with a comfortable, laid-back atmosphere as an alternative to the hustle and bustle of the rest of the campus.