Johnson Controls Gains Ground on Football Hall of Fame Project

In this massive, “smart” city, technologies will be connected within and across a secure digital infrastructure.

Johnson Controls consultants and busy construction teams continue to advance the ball each day at the “Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village,” an $800 million+ mixed-use development of the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s campus, underway in Canton, Ohio.

Announced in November 2016 (see online HERE) the campus is well into its second year of development. The final product will be the first-ever sports and entertainment “Smart City.” Upon completion, 10 major components will be integrated through the technology found in the Johnson Controls Metasys System, to subtlety and seamlessly share messages about the values the Hall of Fame wants to communicate to guests about the game of football: commitment, integrity, courage, respect and excellence.

Those components are:

  • The Hall of Fame Museum, which since 1963 has served to recognize the achievements of pro football’s greatest stars.
  • Black College Football Hall of Fame, which will include a future Black College Football Hall of Fame/Historically Black Colleges & Universities Classic, to be held at the new Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium.
  • Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium, which is now completed. It seats 23,000 and features an NFL-caliber press box and hospitality center.
  • A National Youth Football & Sports Complex, which will include eight, state-of-the-art turf fields and seating for 3,000.
  • Hall of Fame Hotel, which will cover 345,400 sq.ft., and include more than 25,000 sq.ft. for conferences and special events.
  • Hall of Fame Promenade, which will include retail stores, restaurants, a sports bar and office and residential space.
  • The Center For Excellence, which will be home to Coaches University, the Institute for the Integrity of Officiating, the Academy of Corporate Excellence, and a Center for Athletic Performance & Safety.
  • Performance Center, which will feature an indoor, 100-yard football field and space for a basketball arena, and 80,000 sq.ft. of convention space.
  • Player Care Center, a wide range of health services and a 143-bed independent living, assisted living and memory care active senior care facility for retired Hall of Fame players and members of the NFL Legends Community.
  • Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Experience, an indoor amusement park for football, which will provide an interactive experience using advanced virtual game technology.

In this massive, “smart” city, technologies will be connected within and across a secure digital infrastructure, optimizing operations, reducing resource use, and producing meaningful insights that increase productivity, comfort and safety for occupants. Building systems, information technology, communications, specialty, and more, are integrated on a unified, intelligent network, enabling more control and advanced automation, efficient and sustainable operations, and improved comfort and safety.

Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village is the largest project currently under construction in Ohio and will be a top tourist destination for millions of visitors per year. It is projected to bring $15.3 billion dollars in economic impact to the region in its first 25 years.

"What really brought this together was the opportunity to create what we call ‘the most inspiring place on earth,’ said Pete Fierle, chief of staff and vice president of communications for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. “What’s been extraordinary about this project, is the people who have been attracted to it, and have been a part of it. They really believe in the Hall of Fame mission statement, which is to honor the heroes of the game, and that’s not anything about hero worship,” Fierle said. “It is focusing on values that made some people pretty extraordinary in their profession, for a period of time in their lives.”

The relationship between Johnson Controls and the Pro Football Hall of Fame began when Johnson Controls was selected to install indoor air systems for the vast Hall of Fame archives, which contains perishable historical documents and other materials that could be destroyed without proper environmental protection.

Just about every kind of building served around the world by Johnson Controls technologies will be represented in the Hall of Fame Village.

In addition to the naming rights of the Village, Johnson Controls also receives the entitlement to The Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Experience. It will also be the presenting sponsor for the annual celebration in Canton each summer that will be known as the “Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Week Powered by Johnson Controls.”

Jenny Richardson, LEED® AP, is a Johnson Controls account executive for major project sales, systems and services, North America. She says her work on the project for the past two years has been inspired by the dedication she has seen from everyone involved.

“When they say it’s ‘the most inspiring place on earth,’ it really is. Your entire outlook changes. It’s a completely different experience. This project will share that inspiration with others,” Richardson said.

Richardson described the vast amount of work that went into building the stadium, which took 10-months to complete.

“It was a difficult construction project, and a team effort. There were a lot of ‘huddle-ups’ to get to the finish line, and we did. The day the coin was flipped for the 2017 Hall of Fame Game, we said, ‘We did it. We just won our Super Bowl.’ We had 10 months to build a very complex, NFL-quality stadium, but also utilizing design standards that will allow it to be scaled up to handle the infrastructure of the overall village. We took into great consideration what we could do to allow it to be scalable, and to meet the budget and schedule requirements.”

The Johnson Controls Metasys control system will serve as the backbone of the overall control system for the Hall of Fame Village.

“This system is serving the stadium today, but it is built to be scaled up to handle the overall infrastructure of the village, in a very campus-wide approach,” Richardson said. “We want to be prepared for the ‘what-ifs.’ What if the next component of the Village is in downtown Canton? Let’s build it so that you can have a single user interface for the control system, no matter where the system is communicating.”

“We’re trying to implement ‘the future of control systems,’ Richardson continued. “Johnson Controls has developed an IP-based control system with a very user-friendly Metasys User Interface, or MUI, the first in the State of Ohio. This is one of our Alpha sites, and our showcase to bring customers to see a ‘living, breathing’ model.

Another important element in the control system is Johnson Controls Enterprise Management, which takes what would normally be a control system, and applies it to various facility operations, and streamlines them.

The completion of Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village in 2020 is targeted for the National Football League's Centennial celebration in 2020. Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village will be an anchor of the league’s celebration.

CORRECTION: A previous version of this story indicated the Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village would be completed in 2019.

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