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Yankee Stadium

If you’ve ever been taken out to the ballgame, you may have spent more time leaving the stadium than you should. Inefficient building transportation systems often end up clogging galleys with fans who just want to get home.


When New York developer TishmanSpeyer were retained by the Yankees to manage the development of the new Yankee Stadium, their objective was to create a truly world class and visionary replacement for the existing stadium. Edgett Williams Consulting Group were engaged in 2005 to review the concept design presented by the architect. While the design was premised on creating an even better experience for attendees to events at the stadium, very tight site conditions suggested that some alternatives to escalators might be worthwhile. In response to asymmetric arrival patterns and the lack of space for long run escalators, they proposed a system of large elevators to move people to and from the third level of the stadium. While this had never been done in a modern stadium, TishmanSpeyer was intrigued by the idea of creating continuous escalator-like transport within a far smaller footprint than was possible with a more conventional escalator approach.


The challenge was a familiar one to EWCG, which began with a detailed analysis of the site. Because the new stadium was not moving far from its predecessor, the firm was able to use recent pedestrian surveys to produce an accurate picture of traffic patterns. EWCG quickly realized that asymmetry of the arrival/departure required a similar asymmetry to the circulation systems within the stadium and that in exiting the movement of people from the third level to grade would easily overwhelming the escalator system originally envisioned by the building’s architects.


“Escalators have a large footprint, relative to the amount of people they carry,” explains Steve Edgett. “Our analysis showed that space constraints on the Stadium’s design meant that there was simply insufficient room for the quantity of escalators necessary to exit fans from the third tier of the Stadium.”


Instead, the firm proposed an innovative solution: high-tech elevators. EWCG’s modeling showed that with a combination of easily filled elevators and wait times below the required loading times, shuttle elevators could produce a continuous movement which mimicked escalator use. The elevators offered a significantly smaller footprint than a similar number of escalators, ensuring that third tier fans were not given third rate service and reducing the overall circulation space required. This in turn freed up space for concessions and other considerations. Though the approach was initially thought unorthodox, the system was eventually adopted and performed as expected. An added bonus to the use of elevators is that liability concerns related to fan use of escalators are entirely abated as fans exit via the efficient elevator system.

In addition to the innovative concept, EWCG also provided specifications, bidding support, and oversaw the installation of the systems.


To find out more about how EWCG may help devise an innovative solution for your building, please visit our contact page.


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