Atlantic Health Jets Training FacilityEdit profile
For the first time, the New York Jets have their entire organization under one roof. The new Jets Training Center and Corporate Headquarters will serve as the team’s corporate front office (sales, marketing, merchandise, and community/media relations), home of football operations (general manager, scouting, player management), and the team’s dedicated training facilities (playing fields, classrooms, weight room, coaches’ offices, physical therapy). Because the building houses such a wide range of users (players, coaches, executives, media, corporate sponsors), the design needed to meet all of their disparate needs and schedules. To do this the building blurs the boundaries between the different branches of the organization by focusing all of the spaces on the playing fields. The ownership believes that the most successful franchise is one where everyone realizes that ultimately, success is only achieved on the field. The building becomes a physical representation of the entire organization and its architecture reflects its desire to create a culture of winning. The new center will serve as a headquarters for the team’s corporate front office, whose responsibilities include the sales, marketing, merchandise, and community/media relations. It also houses the coaching staff, all teaching facilities (classrooms, an auditorium, etc.) and the training facilities (locker room, weight room, physical therapy, etc.). Finally, the owner will also have a suite of office, located directly on the fifty yard line. Because the building houses such a wide range of users (players, coaches, executives, media, customers), the design needed to meet their disparate needs and schedules. SITING AND MASSING STRATEGIES The building program includes a 121,000sf two story structure, and an 80,000sf indoor pre-engineered fieldhouse. Also on the twenty-seven acre campus are three natural turf fields, one artificial turf field, outdoor sand and incline training structures, three separate landscaped parking lots, a water retention pond, and a field storage building. The artificial turf fields are oriented exactly three degrees off North in order to align exactly with the new Meadowlands Stadium where the Jets will play their home games. The building is sited so that the indoor and outdoor artificial turf fields mirror each other, with the rest of the program either straddling the divide between or surrounding them. This siting achieves several things: it surrounds the fields with the interior spaces connecting the business and football ops offices to the training facilities, creates a stadium-like atmosphere for the players, and shields the fields from being filmed by the sports media. Also, by surrounding the 100’ tall fieldhouse with the rest of the program, it allows the architecture to mitigate the enormous mass of the fieldhouse by concealing its bulk and creating a scalar transition in elevation. The building gives the entire floor over to player training and instruction, while creating several office suites on the second floor, overlooking the field. The thin width of the lower office block provides a feeling of continuity and connectedness while still dedicating space to its specialized users. The interior spaces are coded through the use of a restrained, utilitarian material palette: corrugated metal wraps the field house and service spaces, grey metal panel clads the office spaces, and white metal panel denotes the entries. Wood surrounds key spaces such as the owner’s office, the locker room and the boardroom. Glass is restricted to the exterior walls that receive minimal direct sunlight, reducing unwanted heat-gain and providing views North to the practice fields. INTERIOR FIELD GRID The facility itself is designed so that every activity, be it physical, mental, or financial, is focused on the indoor and outdoor playing fields. To accentuate this, the building takes the grid of the football field as its construction module. The logic of the field, with its hash marks and yardage lines, is extended into the building, with all lighting, materials, mullions, structure, and signage based on the 100 yard grid. VIEW CORRIDORS Because the client would like to focus its employees on the importance of Sunday success, the architecture takes inspiration in forms traditionally associated with stadium architecture. At the entrances, the orthogonal massing of the building collapses in section, creating 30’ tall cones which bring to mind the players tunnels that access stadium fields. These view corridors create monumental entrances to the facility that focus one’s perspective directly on the field from the moment you enter the building. As an extension to this notion of ‘stadium architecture’, the practice field is surrounded by the corporate offices which cantilever out like luxury boxes. At the top of the fieldhouse, Coaches boxes are placed 80’ above field level, grandstands are placed behind the end zones to provide filming at the same angle that the offense coordinators would see during the game. LED walls showing highlights of the latest game are incorporated into the interiors. The result is a practice facility scaled to constantly remind one of the spectacle of NFL Sunday football. PRE-ENGINEERED FIELDHOUSE To meet the aggressive schedule and budget, the fieldhouse is a pre-engineered structure of steel plate girders. This structure deflects far more than the custom designed structure of the rest of the facility, requiring careful design of the building systems and expansion joints. By using this pre-engineered system, the entire project was constructed on budget and completed in only 15 months, just in time for training camp to open.