Today, Tuesday, May 22 marks the 31st birthday of tennis star and former WAG cover guy Novak Djokovic — Happy Birthday, Nole – so it’s an auspicious day to report on the new Louis Armstrong Stadium at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, which makes its debut at this year’s US Open (Aug. 27-Sept. 11).
The new 14,000-seat “Louie,” as it is affectionately called, features a design by ROSSETTI that maximizes airflow, making it the first naturally ventilated tennis stadium in the world with a retractable roof and eliminating the need for air conditioning. There’s a perforated seating bowl, open concourse levels and a façade covered with 14,250 overlapping terra-cotta louvers – all of which foster natural ventilation.
Among the new amenities are two entrances with grand staircases, escalators and elevators, offering access to the lower and upper concourses; storefronts of the US Open Collection, Polo Ralph Lauren, Adidas and Wilson, anchoring the ground floor; viewing areas on the lower concourse; and a variety of food concessions.
It’s all designed to enable you to enjoy the matches while connecting with the buzz of the tennis center.
And there will be plenty of matches to enjoy: For the first time, tennis fans can take in day and night matches at the Louie, with three day matches there during the first nine days, beginning at 11 a.m., and two evening matches for the first six days, beginning at 7 p.m.
More than half of the seats will be general admission; the rest, reserved for those with tickets for a particular session at the stadium.
The new Louie is the final feature of the tennis center’s $600 million, five-year renovation – completed just in time for the center’s 50th anniversary.
For more, visit usopen.org. And look for our story on Billie Jean King in June WAG and more on Louis Armstrong Stadium and how the National Tennis Center plans to celebrate the big 50 in August WAG.