Home to the New York Yankees, Yankee Stadium was built to replace the original 1923 stadium also known as the “House That Babe Ruth Built.” The new stadium was designed to be modern while maintaining the characteristics that comprise the rich history and tradition of the New York Yankees. Completed in April 2009, the $1.5 billion Yankee Stadium at the time was the second most expensive stadium in the world and features an array of products from GKD-USA, the leading full service provider of woven metal fabric for architectural solutions.
Approximately 33,000 square feet of the stadium – both interior and exterior surfaces – were clad using GKD’s stainless steel woven mesh products including Tigris, Tigris PC and Omega 1505 PC. Tigris is flexible in one direction, while both Tigris PC and Omega 1505 PC are rigid. All three of these products are made of ASI Type 316 steel and are 100 percent recyclable. Attachment methods differ for these products depending on the fabric’s application, panel size, structural characteristic, scale and the project’s design intent. GKD is committed to working closely with their customers to develop attachments techniques that fit specific customer needs.
Selected for ease of maintenance and extended lifetime performance, the material was applied to wall cladding, elevator wall cover panels, handrail and railing infill panels, and stair enclosures. In particular, architects and designers chose Tigris for its unique pinstripe design that is characteristic of the New York Yankees uniforms. GKD also applied its proprietary etching technique to prominently display the famed New York Yankees logo onto panels above elevators.
As a high profile project, the new Yankee Stadium posed a few challenges. Because the stadium needed to be operable by opening day, deadlines were incredibly tight. “Everyone working on the project felt the time crunch. But we ran with it ensuring that materials arrived on time and were installed quickly and efficiently in order to meet our deadlines,” said Chris Esterson, Senior Project Engineer at GKD-USA. “GKD has a reputation for making everyone on our team available, from sales and technical service to our executive personnel. In fact, many of our team members are on-site throughout the duration of a project and Yankee Stadium was no exception.”
The circular shape and concrete structure also proved to be complex, especially when attaching steel frames. Architects made structural changes along the way, especially in the ramp and stair area, that impacted GKD plans. However, GKD met every intricacy on the project with flexibility and innovation. When the Great Hall of the stadium left little room overhead for the installation process, GKD developed a unique method of installing material. Additionally, when the architecture of the building required certain lines to slope particular ways for aesthetic appeal, GKD-USA engineered specially made panels and created a custom process to rack the panels after installation.
Construction of the stadium evoked a great sense of pride and accomplishment among the design and building team. The New York Yankees played a large role in the history of baseball and while the old Yankee stadium was known as “The House That Babe Ruth Built,” workers on the new stadium wore shirts that read “The House That We Built” listing every company and local union that worked on the project.