Duke University Athletic Precinct Durham, North Carolina

Project Category : College/University

Total Construction Cost : $186,883,000

Total Gross Square Feet : 190,000 GSF (conditioned space)

Approximate Cost Per Square Foot : $983 (includes hardscape/landscape costs)

How was the facility funded? : Private donations

Project Description:

1) Functional Planning

Building on Becks 2013 update to the Athletic Campus Master Plan, the team embarked on a phased implementation of facility and landscape improvements to Wallace Wade Stadium, Cameron Indoor Stadium, the Murray Building/Scott Family Pavilion Addition, and Tribull Plaza.

The Scott Family Pavilion Addition is a state-of-the-art facility for Duke Olympic sports, athletic retail and athletic event ticketing. The new pavilion complements the Murray Building by adding contiguous Duke Athletics administrative office space and establishing a strong, coherent architectural presence opposite the main entrance of Cameron Indoor Stadium and framing one side of the new Tribull Plaza. The project required three distinct entrances and space planning to separate the multiple users of the building. These include an access controlled student athlete entrance, a retail entrance to the new Nike Team Store and an administrative/visitor entrance.

Additionally, within the administrative space, an access controlled ticketing office was developed including a vault for holding currency and tickets.

The Addition to Cameron Indoor Stadium, framing the opposite side of Tribull Plaza across from the Scott Pavilion, provides an expanded lobby on the first level allowing for controlled access to the stadium that was not available in the original building. On non-game days, the lobby is open to guests to experience the newly curated exhibits and interactive digital displays, while control points restrict access to the student athletes and court. On game day, the lobby provides an area for queuing, security and bag checks in an interior environment, not previously available to fans in the limited existing main Cameron lobby. The Champions Club, located on the second level, provides a new hospitality space to entertain donors and guests, and is a premium space for special events at the university.

Walking through Tribull Plaza, the main gathering space for the athletic campus, visitors arrive at the north gate for the renovated Wallace Wade Stadium, leading them to the expanded pedestrian concourse the circles the stadium. The new Blue Devil Tower forms the backdrop to the home-team sidelines and houses premium seating, hospitality suites, game-day operations and Duke University’s Broadcast network facilities. Mirroring the Tower are newly constructed concessions and restroom buildings to provide amenities for visitors alike.

2) Interior Design

Building on existing campus culture and traditions, the interior design focused on integrating traditional campus materials masonry and wood with athletics program branding guidelines, most importantly the use of Duke Blue. Modern wood paneling and masonry (stone and brick) accents were used throughout all of the buildings a nod to the institutions historic collegiate-gothic campus and the Athletic logo and team graphics are featured prominently in public areas.

For the Blue Devil Tower at Wallace Wade Stadium, working within such an expansive facility, the design utilized floor, ceiling and wall treatments that helped to breakdown the scale of the large spaces, while still providing flexibility and multi-purpose functionality. Accommodating large crowds on game-day and the 600+ students every day for the Athletic Training Table, durability and high performance materials were paramount considerations. Throughout the facility, trophies and other displays serve as touchstones for student-athletes and fans alike, reminding them of the storied history of the athletic program.

At the Addition to Cameron, the open lobby was designed as a high-traffic space that supports the efficient circulation of fans moving through security, queuing in ticket lines and entering/exiting the facility. The exhibits in the lobby wings house a collection of basketball artifacts and feature human-scale, interactive touchscreen displays - each programmed with rich content to heighten the fan experience. The coffered wood ceiling and terrazzo floor pattern are coordinated with the displays and help to create visual definition between zones. On the second level, the Champions Club is an exclusive hospitality space with dining, lounge, and standing zones for members to socialize and watch the games on the numerous TVs throughout the room. The club features a large, central bar with new gothic chandeliers that were commissioned to compliment the design of the historic light fixtures that were refurbished and relocated to the lobby vestibule.

3) Exterior Design

Finding a balance between Dukes traditional architecture and the modern design elements required to make the transformation of the athletics campus successful was one of the challenges faced by the design team. This was especially notable with the design of the Blue Devil Tower.

Rising from the masonry plinth of brick and stone base, the four-story tower is a modern metal and glass volume that provides premium seating with great views of the field and a variety of modern hospitality amenities that were unavailable prior to the renovation. Acknowledging one of the most distinguishing characteristics of Duke's architecture, old and new, a masonry tower was located at the north end of Blue Devil Tower and sits on axis to the main approach from campus. The corner towers proportions, materiality, and articulation recall and reinterpret those found on the iconic Duke Chapel.

Cameron Indoor Stadium, the crown jewel of college basketball's classic venues, is considered one of the Top-20 sports venues in the world. It goes without question that any proposed changes to the stadium, the game-day experience or the building itself is met with caution, concern and high scrutiny. The new addition to Cameron Indoor Stadium respects the character and experience of the existing historic stadium, blending it with modern architectural details and enhancing the fan experience with up-to-date amenities. The exterior seamlessly blends new construction with the existing structure through the use of traditional stone-work, pointed cast stone arches and other gothic-inspired details. On the interior, the facade of the original building was preserved and becomes the new, two-level backdrop of stone for the spaces in the addition.

Special care was taken in the design of the interior space to highlight this stone wall by keeping a visual separation between new and historic materials.

4) Site

The first phase of the renovation of Wallace Wade Stadium was the reconfiguration of the playing surface. The existing running track, which separated the fans from the game on the field, was removed which allowed 4,000 additional field-level seats to be added, bringing fans closer to the game. Adding this new tiered seating required the field to be lowered by 5 feet and re-centered within the new bowl configuration. A new 42 feet high by 75.6 feet wide LED video scoreboard was also installed 90 feet closer to the field than the previous one, further enhancing the more intimate fan experience.

The seating bowl renovations also included the expansion of a new pedestrian concourse with new guest amenities including a variety of concession stands, expansive bathrooms, first-aid stations and guest concierge services. New entry gates, with adjacent ticketing services, were located on each side of the stadium. The seating bowl and concourse structures form the base of the stadium structure and utilize the Duke Brick blend and cast stone elements similar to that used on Dukes main campus, providing visual continuity between the academic and athletic campuses.

Because the renovations spanned several years (and football and basketball seasons), another challenge for both the design and construction teams was phasing the work to accommodate home games and graduations during construction. At Wallace Wade Stadium, temporary press and coaches boxes were designed and installed for use during home games during this period, while exceptional care was taken to minimize impacts to student-athletes, students and fans. At the Cameron Indoor Arena, the new addition was designed to span over a temporary pedestrian tunnel that provided access to the main entrance of the arena on game-days, while construction continued on the second level and on the flanking first-level wings. Safe, secured public access pathways from adjacent parking/tailgating areas and campus access points were maintained throughout the project to accommodate game-day operations and during special events.

5) Cost

One of the benefits of Becks integrated design-build approach to this project was the ability to work collaboratively and providing added value through open lines of communication and a foundation of trust. Each party recognized the others capabilities and fields of expertise and quickly formed a cohesive team that worked together to seek the best solutions to each element of design.

After reviewing the costs, benefits and schedule implications of working on certain elements of the project, the team would jointly come to a decision to lower costs while also exceeding design requirements which also allowed for faster construction and provided some savings to the owner.

This type of cooperative effort was repeated in many facets of the design and allowed for a free exchange of ideas and innovative thought processes. Always seeking advice from subcontractors and vendors whose knowledge of systems, components and materials allowed for the best quality while maintaining the best value.

All of the facilities were designed to meet LEED Silver Criteria and consideration was made to support Duke Athletics Zero Waste initiatives for game-day operations and the campus-wide sustainable strategies outlined in the Duke Sustainability Strategic Plan.

Floor Plans