A Super Stadium for a Superbowl

Published on February 11, 2022
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(Photo Via Urbanize LA)

Just two years after the inaugural opening of SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles, it will be hosting Superbowl LVI with its home team the Los Angeles Rams playing for the championship. But SoFi is so much more than just a football stadium. In fact, it is unparalleled to other stadiums with its revolutionary and carefully thoughtful design.

(Photo via Sporting News)

Designed by HKS Architects in collaboration with Studio-MLA, a LA–based landscape architecture firm led by Mia Lehrer, SoFi Stadium is the first porous, indoor-outdoor stadium with a distinctive transparent roof canopy. Supported by 37 columns, the roof provides protection from direct sun and rain, but because it does not touch any of the stadium’s walls, it creates an open-air space.SoFi features not just a 70,000-seat stadium and lots of parking, but also a 2.5-acre public plaza, an adjacent 6,000-seat performance space and a layered landscape filled with hills, trees, places to sit and eat — all connected to a vibrant 25-acre community park surrounding a 6-acre lake.

(Photo via Forbes.com)

HKS Architects had many challenges with the monster stadium being on the site of the old Hollywood Park racetrack and its proximity to Los Angeles International Airport. It couldn’t be so tall that it would interfere with LAX’s radar or flight paths. So part of the stadium sits 80 feet below ground level. To accommodate the notable grade change, Lehrer created beautifully landscaped pathways that frame the stadium entrances. Planted with vegetation from subtropical Mediterranean biome, the landscape doubles as a botanical garden. Her design also included an environmentally friendly 6-acre lake capturing storm water runoff that can be used to irrigate the planted areas of the stadium. Studio – MLA estimates this strategy will reclaim 26 million gallons of water each year.

The inside of the stadium continues to push design boundaries with the first dual-sided 4K LED display system, the Infinity Screen by Samsung suspended above the playing field and visible from every seat. The largest video board in sports, the screen is 70,000 square feet, displays 80 million pixels and weighs 2.2 million pounds. And from overhead, an LED system embedded in the ETFE panels projects video without sacrificing transparency inside the stadium. Live feeds can be seen from the air by passengers traveling in and out of LAX.

SoFi is an overall entertainment destination and will be host to a variety of other year round events, including the College Football Championship Game in 2023 and the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the Olympic Games in 2028.