First Sports 'Smart City' Under Construction

Pro Football Hall of Fame Teams with Johnson Controls on $700 Million Project

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Posted: Wednesday, August 9, 2017 10:45 am

How often do you get to build a city from the ground up — every building, street, light pole and operating system? That’s exactly what Johnson Controls is doing with Hall of Fame Village LLC at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.

In an 18-year project initiated in late 2016, the two organizations are creating the first sports and entertainment “smart” city, a state-of-the-art $700 million development being spearheaded by the Hall of Fame and Industrial Realty Group.

A professional services contract calls for Johnson Controls’ products, services and solutions to be used within the Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village, including the museum. This will provide for the creation of a showcase “smart city” with the company providing a suite of building management systems to assure “world-class” environments and yield significant operational cost savings over the life of the agreement, according to the partners.

Completed in stages through 2040, the one-of-a-kind campus will include a luxury hotel, stadium, upgraded Pro Football Hall of Fame museum, virtual reality amusement area, assisted living facility, sports research and medical center, retail shops and restaurants, indoor sports facility and a youth sports complex.

Just as important are the smart technologies that will bring the village to life — technologies related to heating and cooling, fire and security, lighting, the fan experience and scoreboard, and a building- and campus-wide operating system. The operating system will allow window shades to adjust according to the movement of the sun, lights to dim as more natural light enters rooms, employees to control cubicle temperature and security cameras to capture faces of people entering and exiting buildings as identification badges appear on monitoring screens.

“Our innovative, integrated, technologies will provide the right combination of safety and security at the Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village in an environment that demonstrates how we connect ‘cities’ that run smartly and reliably,” said Kim Metcalf-Kupres, vice president and chief marketing officer, Johnson Controls.

The completion of the village will coincide with the NFL’s 100th season and subsequent centennial celebration in 2020.

There are 10 main components to the village project:

Hall of Fame Museum

State-of-the-art technology will be infused into the sports museum, starting with “A Game for Life” immersive holographic theater, which opened in July, 2016.

Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium

The venue will be a spectacular sports and entertainment complex that will include a permanent stage built into the stands. Phases I and II will be complete this summer and Phase III will be completed in summer 2018.

Black College Football Hall of Fame

This will be a permanent home to tell the stories of the greatest football players, coaches and contributors from historically black colleges and universities, to be completed in 2019.

National Youth Football & Sports Complex

The complex will include eight turf fields that will be multi-purposed, lighted and equipped with the latest technology and video capabilities. The sports complex will include full amenities, a concourse area and a championship field with 3,000 seats. Three fields opened in 2016, and five more will be complete in 2017. The complex will be completed in spring of 2018.

Four-Star Hotel & Conference Center

This will be a unique football-themed, upscale hotel that includes a 25,000 square-foot conference center, to be complete in 2019.

Hall of Fame Promenade (Retail, Restaurants, Residential)

The promenade will feature retail stores and restaurants including the "world's greatest sports bar," office, and residential support. It will be complete in 2019.

The Center for EXCELLENCE

A Coaches University, an Institute for the Integrity of Officiating and an Academy of Corporate Excellence will be complete in 2019.

Performance Center

The Performance Center will also house an indoor 100-yard football field and a configuration for a basketball arena that will hold 6,000. It will also have 80,000 square feet of flat convention space, scheduled to be complete in 2020.

Player Care Center

The center will provide a wide range of services and include LEGENDS LANDING, a football themed independent and assisted living active senior care facility for retired Hall of Famers and members of the NFL’s Legends Community along with coaches, officials and administrators. It is scheduled to open in 2020.

Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Experience

This is billed as “an interactive and immersive virtual reality experience that places fans not only at the game but in the game!” The estimated $120 million amusement park experience is set to open in early 2019. The attraction will also feature a football-themed waterpark scheduled to open in 2020.

The village will showcase building automation systems that are being introduced throughout the country as cities undertake technology upgrades and infrastructure improvements, all in an effort to create smart, safe, comfortable spaces that attract and retain residents, workers and businesses.

The largest project currently under construction in Ohio, the village will have a dramatic impact on the region and state for decades. During its peak year, the project will create more than 13,000 new jobs; and over a 25-year period, the village will generate $15.3 billion in cumulative net new total economic output within Stark County, Ohio, according to an independent economic feasibility study completed in 2015.

“This is an extraordinary partnership… that celebrates excellence everywhere,” said David Baker, Pro Football Hall of Fame president. “Johnson Controls and the Hall of Fame share strong values and a vision of improving others’ lives and making the world a better place.”

Under the terms of the deal, Johnson Controls will become the “Official Smart City Partner” of Hall of Fame Village, and the company will be the presenting sponsor for the annual celebration in Canton each summer that will be known as the Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Week Powered by Johnson Controls. The agreement ranks in the top 80 percentile of sports naming rights deals and is the largest ever for the market size.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame is an independent 501 (c)(3) not-for-profit institution. The NFL Hall of Fame Committee is chaired by Dallas Cowboys Owner, President and General Manager Jerry Jones.

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