GoVision Blankets U.S. Open with LED
More than 700,000 tennis fans converged recently on the USTA Billie Jean National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, NY for the U.S. Open, one of the sport’s most prestigious events. Hundreds of athletes took to the DekoTurf for the 14 day competition, which took place in three stadiums and 33 courts spread around the campus.
And capturing it all, for both the on-site attendees and viewers from home, was an army of media, organizers and sportscasters who were networked into one of 13 GoVision HD outdoor video screens placed around the complex.
This was the first year GoVision screens were at the U.S. Open according to CEO Chris Curtis, and it’s the most LED screens he’s set up at a single event in the 10-year history of the company. For 10 months of the year, the courts are open to the public for casual play, so there’s no need to have expensive, hi-res video equipment on the scene except for the two permanent video walls installed in the stadiums.
But when it’s time for the Open, everything changes and the campus becomes a city teeming with athletes and spectators who need to see the action, get scores and schedules and absorb sponsor messages. GoVision’s task was to team with Panasonic to provide LED walls for 13 different installations which ranged from 12 to 54 feet wide, including streaming banners and mobile units mounted on trucks.
Getting the video walls to the complex was one challenge, requiring four semi trucks and 20 people for load-in and set-up. Weather played a factor during set-up as well. “We lost two days to rain, and just had to make it up in effort and overtime,” says Curtis. Another challenge was discovering that all their design work had been done with eight-year-old drawings that didn’t take into account any structural changes that had taken place in the previous years. “We had to retrofit the existing infrastructure to accommodate the new gear by modifying every structure,” says Curtis.
But professionalism and persistence ruled the day and when the gates opened on August 27, GoVision was ready—truly a win for everybody.