HOK’s design for Las Vegas Ballpark, home to the Triple-A baseball Las Vegas Aviators franchise, draws inspiration from the surrounding desert and aeronautical history of its corporate owner, the Howard Hughes Corp. The baseball team, formerly called the 51s, is also owned by the Hughes Corp. It was renamed the Aviators with the stadium’s opening to refer to owner’s original aviation emphasis.
Devin Norton, project designer at HOK, says he wanted his plans to recognize unique qualities of the site and the corporation’s history. “The materiality was split between a well-balanced base that reflected the earthy materials of the red rock canyon and Summerlin. The upper portion of the design stems from light and airy materials that tie into the concept of aviation. A plane is an efficient, lightweight machine made of steel, glass and metal panels. This became the palette of the skin of the building, from the main concourse all the way up to the press box.”
To reference the surrounding desert, metal panels were installed in three widths on the stadium walls, and spaced at intervals more frequently used on roofs than walls. “We wanted to break down the module in a varied panel to reduce the overall scale,” Norton says. Southwest Specialty Contractors installed 31,000 square feet of Petersen Aluminum Corp.’s 22-gauge PAC-CLAD Snap-Clad steel panels in custom Chocolate Chip. They are 8, 10 and 12 inches wide.
Attention to detailing was critical during installation. Alex Laws, senior project manager at Southwest Specialty Contractors, says, “A typical layout was given, with repeat patterns, and all flashings were fabricated locally from flat sheets of the same material. It was a bit challenging with sealing the system properly, because the architect specified a roofing panel in a wall condition.”
The stadium is an anchor in a downtown shopping, dining and entertainment district that opened in 2014. Ballpark amenities include a swimming pool, breathable mesh seating and 126-foot-wide, LED video screen.