Louis Armstrong Stadium completes USTA’s transformation plan

The new-look Louis Armstrong Stadium has been officially opened ahead of the 2018 US Open, with the 14,069-seat venue representing the final part of a decade-long overhaul of facilities at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York.

This year’s edition of the United States’ tennis grand slam commences at Flushing Meadows on Monday and the new Louis Armstrong Stadium is set to be one of the star attractions.

Armstrong had been the main venue at the US Open from 1978 until Arthur Ashe Stadium opened in 1997. Construction work commenced on the new $500m (£389.6m/€432.4m) stadium following the 2016 US Open and it features an innovative design that naturally ventilates the stadium, while also protecting the court during inclement weather through a retractable roof.

This makes Louis Armstrong Stadium the first naturally ventilated tennis stadium with a retractable roof in the world. Armstrong marks the final piece of a 10-year partnership between the United States Tennis Association (USTA) and global architectural design and planning firm Rossetti to re-imagine and transform the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center campus.

Matt Rossetti, president of Rossetti, said: “Ten years ago, the USTA and Rossetti defined a bold new vision for the US Open tennis tournament, which will be completed with the opening of Louis Armstrong Stadium. At that time, the vision of ‘spectacle’ was immediately embraced and proliferated throughout all future planning and design. It even became part of the culture on campus. No longer would tennis be the sole mission of the tournament as players and guests alike expect and anticipate a scene unlike any in tennis.

“New York City’s US Open is an experience on par with any international event of grandeur and prestige. From the approach to the campus, the guest experience is curated and personalised at the micro level of detail to the macro scale of hospitality, entertainment, shopping, dining and people watching throughout all levels of the tennis stadiums and elevated platforms.”

As part of the firm’s partnership with the USTA to redevelop its National Tennis Center campus, Rossetti also served as the architectural designers for Arthur Ashe Stadium’s retractable roof – the largest of its kind at any tennis venue in the world. The firm also designed the new Grandstand Stadium which, along with Louis Armstrong Stadium, anchor two sides of the campus.

For a more detailed insight into the development of Louis Armstrong Stadium, check out a Project Profile at TheStadiumBusiness.com in the week commencing September 3.

Image: Rossetti