2011 Excellence Awards Architainment Nominee
As the freshly renamed Mercedes-Benz Superdome entered the homestretch of a $300 million renovation that has completely modernized the facility, Superdome officials turned to Solomon Group to deliver the icing on the cake. Together with Martin Professional, we served up a solution that instantly transforms both the facility and the New Orleans nighttime skyline. On October 20, 2011, our clients flipped the switch on 288 Martin Exterior 410™ fixtures that wash the famed stadium’s exterior in a spectrum of animated colors, patterns and images. More than 4,000 spectators gathered to witness the dynamic, 11-minute light show and scripted soundtrack we created especially for the event.
The four quadrants of the Superdome’s exterior also feature Martin Professional Exterior 1200 Image Projectors™, powerful 1,200W luminaires designed to project animated images and effects. The entire lighting system is controlled by a Martin Professional MaxModule Cerebrum™, a powerful touch-screen control unit, working through four Martin Ether2DMX8™ routers, one located in each quadrant of the dome. The lighting control system can also be operated remotely so that the color scheme can be managed and manipulated off site.
The new lighting system will showcase the facility as part of the city’s vibrant Sports District and will also include coordinated illumination with Champions Square.
“Our goal was to create a lighting system that is both innovative and aesthetically stunning. Onlookers are sure to be amazed by what it brings to the exterior of the Mercedes-Benz Superdome,” says Solomon Group President Gary Solomon, Jr. “The lighting will complement what we did for Champions Square and add a new element to our city’s iconic skyline.”
Working with local architects Eskew+Dumez+Ripple/Ellerbe Becket, A Joint Venture, and electrical contractor Frischhertz Electric, Solomon Group installed the system, which is remarkably energy-efficient. The lighting system will be operated nightly and will feature many different colors and lighting patterns. The design of the lighting system includes the capability to customize effects, images and color in order to celebrate specific events or commemorate occasions.
“This is something we have been interested in doing for some time. Exterior lighting can transform a facility and have a huge impact on the night-time skyline,” says SMG senior vice president Doug Thornton, who operates the Mercedes Benz Superdome. “We see this as another significant feature that will enhance the identity of the facility, while creating a colorful display for all New Orleanians to enjoy.”
Brian Friborg, President of Martin Professional US, comments on the project, stating, “The Superdome project has really exceeded all expectations, and we are extremely proud to be a part of it. We have been very moved by this project, by the sincere passion of those involved, and what the renovation of the Superdome has meant to the people of New Orleans. This is really about the rebirth of an iconic American venue, and a wonderful city, and we are glad to have played a small part in that.”
Jonathan Foucheaux, Solomon Group
Kurt Hagstette, Eskew+Dumez+Ripple/Ellerbe Becket
Brad Haynes, Martin Professional
Pat Tobler, The Tobler Company
Matthew Foucheaux, Solomon Group
Bruce Frischhertz, Frischhertz Electric
288 Martin Professional Exterior 410
16 Pathway Connectivity DMX/RDM Splitter
4 Martin Professional Exterior 1200 Image Projector
4 Martin Professional Ether2Dmx Artnet to DMX
1 Martin Professional Cerebrum Controller
1 Martin Professional M1 Controller (for programming)