Downtown Charlotte with frontage on the belt freeway
Charlotte, North Carolina
City of Charlotte
Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority
Charlotte Convention Center
Lauth Property Group
LEED Silver certified
NASCAR Tower completed 5/09
Hall of Fame
NASCAR Hall of Fame
Charlotte, North Carolina
Hall of Fame completed 2010
NASCAR Tower completed 2009
Click on image to enlarge
In approaching the challenge of designing a Hall of Fame for NASCAR, we sought to capture the essential spirit of NASCAR and its sport in
architectural form. In exploring the possibilities for expressing speed and spectacle, we were drawn to the arena of action, the racecourse, where fans and race teams come together each raceweek for the spectacle of raceday. Curving, sloped forms are evocative not only of the dynamic and changing sinuous shape of the racetrack but also of the perception of speed, which is at the heart of the NASCAR spectacle.
An important part of our design strategy was to locate NASCAR Hall of Fame
Plaza, a sweeping forecourt that welcomes visitors to the Hall of Fame, on the northern edge of the site, poised toward the pedestrian traffic and energy of uptown Charlotte.
The Hall of Fame consists of four basic elements. First, a large glazed oval shape forming a Great Hall serves as the symbolic core of the Hall of Fame and a primary orientation point for the visitor. Second, a rectangular volume houses visitor services, including entry and exhibit space on the upper floors.
Third, an expressed Hall of Honor is situated as an iconic element within the Great Hall. Finally, a broadcast studio, serving as an origination point for a variety of radio and television broadcasts by NASCAR's media partners, enlivens the Plaza.
The results of our explorations of speed and spectacle evolved into an architectural element we call the Ribbon, which envelops the varied program elements in a form that speaks to the imagery and spirit of NASCAR. Beginning as a curved,
sloping exterior wall enclosing the building, the Ribbon twists in a free span over the main entry to form a welcoming canopy. Inspired by the dynamic quality of speed, captured in a second as a blur on film, the long, thin incisions in this metal skin are analogous to the blur of a car racing past the spectator at tremendous speed. On the interior within the Great Hall, a signature element of a curved banked ramp leads the visitor from the main floor to the exhibit levels above. The ramp
contains a display of race cars frozen in a moment from a race, capturing in another way the speed and spectacle that is the essence of the sport.
NASCAR Tower is a 20-story office tower anchoring the southeast corner of the full-city-block development that is the Hall of Fame Complex. Located at the intersection of the Caldwell Street freeway interchange, the tower is designed as a gateway to the city and to blend with iconic design of the Hall of Fame. The tower form follows the lead
of the Hall of Fame, consisting of a curvilinear metal and glass curtainwall contrasted with a rectangular precast concrete armature.
175,000 s/f Hall
of Fame and Museum; 100,000 s/f ballroom; 427,000 s/f NASCAR Tower; 1,000-space parking garage
The Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design / The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies: American Architecture Award
McGraw Hill: Best of 2010 Awards:
Award of Excellence for Architectural Design
Ceilings & Interior Systems Construction Association:
Construction Excellence Silver Award
Walls & Ceilings:
Excellence in Design (for NASCAR Tower)
Winning competition entry
Pei Cobb Freed & Partners services
Full architectural services
Associate Architect for Hall of Fame/ballroom/parking
Little Diversified Architectural Consulting, Charlotte, North Carolina
Associate Architect for office tower
LS3P Associates Ltd., Charlotte, North Carolina
Site Observations Architect
Tobin Dudley Starr, Charlotte, North Carolina
Leslie E. Robertson Associates, R.L.L.P., New York
Mechanical / Electrical / Plumbing
Jaros Baum & Bolles, New York
Ralph Appelbaum Associates, Inc., New York