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AECOM to build MSG Sphere in Las Vegas

The Madison Square Garden Company (MSG) has appointed AECOM as the main contractor for the construction of its new Las Vegas venue.

Set to be opened in 2021, MSG Sphere at The Venetian will be a 17,500-seat multi-use venue that features the world’s largest and highest resolution LED screen.

AECOM, which built the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas and Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, will work with architect Populous and project manager Rider Levett Bucknall on the development of the 18-acre site that will connect to The Venetian casino and hotel resort via an approximately 1,000-foot long pedestrian bridge.

“We’re excited to partner with The Madison Square Garden Company to deliver a next-generation venue in the heart of the world’s most celebrated entertainment capital,” said Michael S. Burke, AECOM’s chairman and chief executive.

“We’re thrilled about this opportunity to leverage our unrivalled construction management capabilities and expertise on the world’s most complex projects to help transform an ambitious vision into a destination venue unlike any that exists today.”

Plans for the MSG Sphere venues in Las Vegas and London were released last year. The London venue will be in the Stratford area and have a capacity of 21,500.

According to MSG, the Las Vegas venue will be 360 feet tall and 516 feet wide, with an iconic spherical shape and fully programmable LED exterior.

Inside the venue, guests will be surrounded by the world’s largest and highest resolution LED screen with more than 160,000 square ft. of display surface – equal to three football fields. The screen will wrap up, over and behind the stage and audience, with picture quality estimated to be 100 times better than today’s HD televisions.

MSG is promising a fully immersive experience which it believes will make it the most sought-after arena for attractions, concerts and other events.

It will utilise beamforming technology to deliver crystal clear audio and an infrasound haptic system that uses deep vibrations so guests can “feel” the experience “whether it’s a volcano erupting or a motorcycle roaring by”. It will also emit “evocative scents that truly transport audiences”.

Additionally, the venue will offer WiFi connectivity of up to 25 megabits per second for guests in all 17,500 seats, “enabling a broader range of content and greater interaction”.

Jayne McGivern, MSG’s executive vice president of development and construction, said: “We are making important progress in Las Vegas and are pleased to have added another world-class company to our team.

“AECOM’s experience creating bold, innovative projects makes them the ideal partner for bringing MSG Sphere at The Venetian to life.

“We look forward to working with them to deliver a truly groundbreaking experience for Las Vegas, one that will ultimately redefine the entertainment industry and serve as a long-term investment in the city’s role as a leading international tourist destination.”

Image: MSG