HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — The next time you heard a “Scoreboard” chant at the Toyota Center in Houston, it might not be just about what Jeremy Lin and the Rockets are doing on the court.
With Today’s announcement that the Rockets will unveil a new, video scoreboard (of the state-of-the-art variety, of course) that will provide the “largest combined viewing area of any indoor center-hung scoreboard currently used in the U.S.,” fans in Texas need to get their popcorn ready for an unmatched in-arena experience.
You don’t need a degree from MIT to understand that this means games at the Toyota Center will be unlike games anywhere else. A couple of years back during All-Star Weekend in Dallas we were warned about the stunning brilliance and sheer size of the humongous scoreboard we would enjoy at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington.
The warnings didn’t do the actual experience justice.
And now comes word that the Rockets are about to treat fans Deep in the Heart of Texas, and beyond, to the biggest scoreboard in basketball, it’s sure to be a hit with folks fortunate enough to make it to the Rockets’ home opener against Portland on Nov. 3. The new scoreboard, however, is just one piece of a larger redefinition of the in-arena experience the Rockets have planned:
The new board is the centerpiece of a sweeping arena-wide improvement project that was announced today and also includes the installation of new HD flat panel screens throughout the concourses, upgraded Wi-Fi connectivity options, new concessions point-of-sale systems and other upgrades for Toyota Center patrons. The board will debut at the Rockets Nov. 3rd regular season home opener against the Portland Trailblazers.
“This is an exciting day for Toyota Center and the more than 1.3 million patrons who attend events here each year,” said Houston Rockets and Clutch City Sports & Entertainment Chief Executive Officer Tad Brown. “Mr. Alexander has always challenged us to find innovative ways of improving the fan experience, and this new scoreboard is quite simply going to be the best-in-class among indoor arenas in the country. Our fans in all locations will have the opportunity to experience Rockets games, and other events, like never before. Our new Wi-Fi data network will allow fans to stay connected and the upgraded concessions network will make ordering of food and beverage items faster and more efficient. These improvements, along with many others, will provide Toyota Center patrons with an unmatched in-arena experience for many years to come.”
The new scoreboard will be manufactured and installed by Panasonic and will feature the largest combined viewing area of any indoor center-hung scoreboard currently used in the U.S. The scoreboard will contain four large screens—two rectangular-shaped displays that will face the east and west seating areas and a pair of square-shaped screens that will face the north and south ends of the bowl. The larger boards will measure approximately 25’ high by 58’ wide. The two end panels will measure approximately 25’ high by 25’ wide. All the boards will display a full HD signal with 1080 lines of resolution. Plans also include the installation of ancillary boards in each of the four corners of the upper concourse that will be used to display additional statistics during Rockets games and other sporting events.
The new center-hung board will offer fans in all areas of Toyota Center an unmatched view of the action. The new board will provide a video image that is more than 600 percent larger than the previous scoreboard that had been used since the building’s debut in 2003. Additionally, the new board will be capable of handling limitless configurations for displaying live action, game statistical information and animations.
The Rockets had us at “25 feet high by 58 feet wide.”
Nothing else needed to be said, our college years were spent staring at a 19-inch hand-me-down huddled in a dorm room with five other HD dreamers trying to watch All-Star Games and playoff games when we should have been studying.
And for the record, that vision of beauty in Arlington is not considered to be in an actual arena since the building has a retractable roof and is not “center hung” … a technicality you knew would come up one way or another, and one we could care less about in this instance.
At this stage of the game we get giddy over the prospect of a 60-inch TV and now you’re talking about a scoreboard that measures 25 feet high by 58 feet wide on the sides.
We’ll take it!