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Implementing Fiber Optic Networks in Major US Stadiums

Sep 16th, 2016

Municipalities developing public projects research all the latest materials and products to future-proof their investment. For any community building a new multipurpose stadium, future-proofing means planning for moving nearly a terabyte of data for video, radio, telephone, computers and servers across a network flawlessly. Sports teams, security personnel, facilities operators, and tens of thousands of people attending an event, each with her own phone, tablet and watch, will want to connect to a stadium's network and access the Internet. Atlanta's new Mercedes-Benz Stadium and SunTrust Park will use thousands of miles of fiber-optic cable to build a fiber optic network to enable all of that and more.

Each of the projects will include thousands of access points for event participants and fans and bring the fiber optic cable to within the last foot or less of network access points. According to the Mobile Sports Report, Mercedes-Benz Stadium will include 1,000 access points under the seats in the bowl of the stadium and 4,000 miles of fiber optic cable. Jared Miller, CTO at AMB Sports and Entertainment described optical fiber as "a necessary infrastructure underpinning for facilities like Mercedes-Benz Stadium."

SunTrust Park, according to Atlanta Constitution Journal, includes a 100-gigabyte Ethernet network, 700 wi-fi access points, and 750 4K video displays. A spokesman for the park said, "When the first pitch is thrown next season at SunTrust Park, 40,000 fans will be able to simultaneously take a picture and post it to their social media accounts."

Sacramento, California opens Golden 1 Center this fall. The project includes a 16-story hotel and a retail mall. For all of these projects, future-proofing is not just about being ready on the first game day. It is about planning for what you will need down the road. Matt Eclavea, the VP of Technology for the Sacramento Kings, said "Golden 1 Center's setup has enough headroom for 10, even 20 years of innovation before anything could possibly overwhelm their network."

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