Venue News: Packers Fans Sound Off on New Lambeau Audio System

The new $2.5 million sound system at Lambeau Field received mixed reviews after the home opener against the New Orleans Saints, and the Green Bay Packers organization says it will tweak the system for upcoming home games. About a dozen fans contacted Gannett Wisconsin Media to express disappointment in the new audio system. Most said they sat toward the south end zone and complained that the announcements and music were difficult to hear. The system was installed this summer, and according to the team, sound system engineers have been making adjustments based on their observations and feedback from fans. Unlike the old sound system, which projected from one source on the north scoreboard, the new audio setup employs 16 speaker enclosures around the roof of the stadium…

… NRG Energy and the Washington Redskins have unveiled a new solar installation totaling nearly 2 MW at FedEx Field. According to the companies, this is the largest PV installation at an NFL stadium. On game days, solar power is expected to provide up to 20% of FedEx Field’s power. On non-game days, the solar system can provide up to 100% of the stadium’s electrical needs, depending on weather conditions. The NRG solar entry plaza at Gate A will generate power through a variety of green energy technologies, including translucent solar panels and a specially designed sculpture created using thin-film solar technology. The sculpture — a 30-foot tall silhouette of a football player dubbed “Solar Man” — showcases the flexibility of the technology…

… After two years of little progress in the Chargers’ bid to build support for a new home, a team of local architects is throwing out another idea: renovate the 44-year-old Qualcomm Stadium. According to the architects, modernizing locker rooms and the press box, widening concourses, improving technology, and adding restaurants, lounges, premium seats, and bathrooms would cost only about $250 million, or one-fourth the cost of a new stadium. They also said it would preserve an important piece of local architecture and help keep the Chargers from moving to Los Angeles, as some fans worry will happen. Retired architect Jack Carpenter, who is leading the local preservationists’ effort, said Qualcomm Stadium received a national design award from the American Institute of Architects after it opened in 1967 and could be a model again…

…The developer of Brooklyn’s Barclays Center said he’s “hopeful” the Islanders will move to the new arena when the hockey team’s lease at Nassau Coliseum expires in 2015. Although Bruce Ratner declined to reveal whether he has had talks with the NHL team, his comments were the strongest he has made yet about pro hockey joining the NBA’s Nets at the Barclays Center, which opens in September 2012. For years, Barclays Center officials claimed the arena would be too small for pro hockey. But two months ago they confirmed the arena would actually be fitted with an NHL-regulation rink. The arena holds 18,000 seats for basketball, and sources said it could hold about 14,500 seats for hockey. Currently, the smallest seating capacity for an NHL team is 15,015 at the MTS Center in Winnipeg, which will be the home to the Winnipeg Jets this season.  The NHL says it doesn’t have a minimum-seating requirement for arenas.

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