Monday, October 29, 2007

ExxonMobil Arena / Disaster Shelter

The odds are good and getting better that your local sports arena will someday have to house thousands of evacuees. First it was the Superdome in NOLA, then Houston's Astrodome, then, this week, Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego. In spite of "ballpork" derision, sports arenas nationwide are earning their keep as shelters for disaster victims in the age of global warming.

So why not do some advance planning in the design of new stadia, by incorporating humanitarian aid facilities, crisis communications centers, and National Guard barracks among the locker rooms and bleachers? It might cost a bit more, but let's just auction off the naming rights to corporations in need of a quick burnish to their public image.

Here's my idea for an ExxonMobil Arena / Disaster Shelter:

Image manipulation based on HKS Architects' rendering of the new Lucas Oil Field in Indianapolis.

  1. Off-grid power and communications facilities: Wind turbines and retractable-rooftop solar arrays provide electricity for vital communications, medical, and cooling equipment during inevitable power outages.

  2. Rooftop rain collection and cisterns supply on-site ice plant and plumbing systems.

  3. Skyboxes convert to "command center" offices for FEMA, city government, local law enforcement, military, and other public safety officers.

  4. Upper concourses house deployable cubicles to create modular bunkrooms and living units for long-term evacuee families

  5. Street-level concourses include first-responder facilities, dispatcher services, social workers, ice distribution, and other support services for "walk-in" disaster victims and arriving evacuees.

  6. Interior foodservice facilities include industrial kitchens capable of processing basic meals for thousands

  7. Groundskeeping and staging areas include space for inflatable rainwater collection bladders, fuel cells and propane tanks, and ice chilling plants. Locker rooms and sports team clubhouses convert into barracks for public safety personnel.

  8. The playing field acts as a "public green" for evacuees: in addition to cots, the central field also includes programming appropriate for a community center, including the massages and yoga lessons recently popularized in California, plus school classes, sports, library services, etc.


Brown said...

Nope. This makes waaay too much sense to ever happen.

Corey Templeton said...

Sounds like a good idea to me. It's a shame these huge buildings, especially ones for football, are only used sparingly.

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