Case Study

Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium & Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village Pedestrian-first Ethos Activates Pro Football Hall of Fame Stadium & Village

Canton, Ohio

The Challenge

HKS was challenged to create a destination that aligns with the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s mission, vision and values as the most “inspiring place on earth” for anyone who has been impacted by the game of football. The design team aspired to create an NFL-caliber fan experience in an intimate, immersive and connected sports and entertainment district that also delivers an economic impact for the region.

The Design Solution

Working within a compact environment with existing structures, HKS’ site plan and stadium design relate to the scale and context of the Hall of Fame Museum, McKinley High School and other buildings located on the site. With “The Hall” at the heart of the master plan, HKS created a central pedestrian-oriented spine consisting of public spaces and landscaped plazas, knitting together the sports complexes and Village assets into a walkable, cohesive and integrated mixed-use destination for fans and visitors to enjoy year-round.

Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium, a visually open and intimate venue with a capacity of 23,000, meets NFL requirements for athlete and patron comfort and safety, offering world-class hospitality experiences and amenities. With a grand view overlooking Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village, the venue includes more than 7,000 square feet of club, lounge and terrace spaces, luxury suites and high quality food and beverage offerings on all concourses.

HKS’ groundbreaking design includes an embedded stage located at the 50-yard line, allowing fans to engage in the live entertainment, whether for a concert or Gold Jacket procession during Hall of Fame Enshrinement ceremonies.

With the local government contemplating connectivity at a broader scale, HKS completed an urban design feasibility study that helped define regional goals to connect the Village and Canton’s historic downtown. The planned transportation system and new urban parks connects fans and visitors within the community, showcasing the city and spurring economic growth.

The Design Impact

Serving as a source of regional pride, Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium is a flexible venue that allows for a variety of configurations and events, deepening the connection between the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the extended community.

The stadium and Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village is a vibrant, year-round sports and entertainment destination and economic engine for the region. One example is The Hall’s Enshrinement Festival, which has grown from four to 18 events, drawing 700,000 visitors and generating about $40 million for the region.

Project Features

  • Venue with 23,000 paid capacity
  • Permanent performance/presentation stage
  • NFL press box & athletic facilities
  • Stadium suites, VIP lounge & rooftop terrace
  • Hall of Fame Hotel & conference/event center
  • National football & youth sports complex
  • Hall of Fame Promenade (retail, restaurants, office & residential)