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Project

Ford Field

Ford Field, home of the NFL’s Detroit Lions, features a 700-foot by 640-foot long-span roof system supported by only eight columns.

Lead Contact

Project Details

Project Partners
SmithGroup
Owner
Detroit Stadium Authority
Location
Detroit, Michigan
Completion Date
Area
1.35 million ft²
Seating Capacity
80,000
Teams/League
Detroit Lions - NFL
Number of Suites
99
Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. Courtesy SmithGroup
Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. Courtesy SmithGroup
Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. Thornton Tomasetti
Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. Thornton Tomasetti
Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. Thornton Tomasetti

Overview

Home of the NFL’s Detroit Lions, Ford Field has a unique sports and entertainment venue design that incorporates the six-story Hudson Warehouse, a structure built in the 1920s, along the south wall of the stadium. Facing the playing field, this 90-year-old building was renovated to include 130 luxury suites on three levels. Ford Field has hosted the 2006 Super Bowl XL, the 2008 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Regional Games and is the home for the NCAA Quick Lane Bowl.

We provided structural design services to SmithGroup for the stadium, which was completed in 2002.

Highlights

  • The facility features a 700-foot by 640-foot long-span roof system supported by only eight columns. The innovative and economical roof design allowed all truss and tower elements to incorporate shippable truss components and enabled the use of long-span joists as the typical roof framing elements.
  • By using so few columns and locating them far from the field, interference with spectator sight lines was all but eliminated.
  • The south wall along the stadium incorporates the six-story Hudson Warehouse, a structure built in the 1920s. Facing the playing field, this 90-year-old building was renovated to include 130 luxury suites on three levels.
  • A six-story glass atrium is positioned on the south entrance, which provides spectators with an unobstructed view of downtown Detroit’s skyline.

Capabilities