Wofford College, Jerry Richardson Indoor Stadium

Spartanburg, South Carolina

Design team: McMillan Pazdan Smith: Ron G. Smith, AIA (Managing Principal), Anthony Tiberia, AIA (Project Manager), Shannon Calloway, AIA (Project Architect), Toren Andersson, AIA (Design Architect)

Designed in the style of the classic “cathedrals” of basketball, yet boasting impressive technological innovations, this arena seeks to preserve and capture the ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCAPACITY3,500COST PER SQ FT$351.00CITATIONSports Stadiums/Athletic Facilities CitationFEATURED IN2018 Architectural PortfolioSUB CATEGORYSports Stadiums/Athletic Facilities and tradition of the game while addressing its present and future. More than just an arena, this facility is a key part of the school’s phased master plan for the next several decades, sitting at the important intersection of athletic, academic, community and student life. It contributes to the school’s overall collegiate experience by promoting a high level of athletic performance in a beautiful setting and balancing it against the intensive coursework typical of this liberal arts institution.
As people enter the concourse through a two-story signature lobby flanked by monumental staircases and an escalator, the ease of spectator movement is remarkable. The main concourse acts as an indoor tailgating experience, encouraging communication between suites and generating a sense of community and fellowship. A student-only section replicates the feel of a traditional sports restaurant. Large screen TVs, tables with power, and dedicated concessions create an environment that extends the social context around the game and engages the student community.
The design recognizes that a student athlete’s most precious resource is time, so each team has a dedicated locker room and lounge/study room. These spaces are designed to balance studies with the need to train. The on-site media lab transforms into a study hall during exams, and student athletes have 24/7 access to the facility, so they can use their time efficiently.
At the heart of technological innovation in the facility, the student-run broadcast media studio is equipped with the latest video and audio capabilities and operates at standards accepted by national sports broadcasting platforms. By expanding the existing fiber optics network, the studio creates opportunities for students to develop content for athletics across the entire campus. This learning lab approach to sports media not only serves athletics well, but also offers tremendous opportunity for students to gain real-world experience and extend value to the alumni community worldwide.
Designed to be much more than a single sport venue, the facility also engages the community at large. Designated areas throughout the concourse can be reserved for community-related events outside the athletic schedule. Local high schools, amateur athletic associations, summer sports camps and others can even run multiple events simultaneously, creating connections between the campus and the surrounding city.