Madison Square Garden opened its doors to hockey fans on Thursday, September 27, for the face-off between the New York Rangers and Toronto Maple Leafs. The occasion marked opening night for the Rangers’ home season — and the storied arena’s first sports event since completing phase one of a venue-wide renovation.
The new look inside the arena includes a Harris digital-out-of-home (DOOH) network powering HD graphics and high-impact video on numerous digital display screens — progressing the level of fan engagement and the way visitors inside the venue experience the game. Fans passing by the box office, wandering the main concourses and climbing the escalators see a mix of promotional content for sports and other live events, advertisements, and — in the concourse areas — digital menu boards highlighting food and beverage selections.
The digital display signs and striking content are especially vibrant in the freshly renovated main concourse, which has been widened and well-lit to create a more enticing environment for fans. The fan experience will be further heightened following the completion of the final two renovation phases, which will see the Harris DOOH network expanded to inside the bowl, upper concourses and other areas including two elaborate sky bridges.
“Having the opportunity to participate in what is likely the most complex sports arena transformation in North America and perhaps the world is a huge honor,” said Michael Arthur, general manager, sports and live events, Harris Broadcast Communications. “This is primed to be a very robust environment for digital signage content due to the large amount and wide variety of events at Madison Square Garden.”
Harris is providing both the digital out-of-home element and a robust core network infrastructure to support content management and playout across multiple signs, with Harris® Punctuate™ business management software now live and managing advertising schedules and placements across the network.
Arthur estimates that about 40-50 percent of the DOOH network is up and running to align with the first phase of the overall building renovation. The remainder of the DOOH network integration will coincide with phases two and three of the renovation. Diversified Systems (DSI), a systems integration firm based in Kenilworth, New Jersey, is working with Harris to roll out the entire DOOH network.