Atlanta Motor Speedway
Hampton, GA United States | 2006
As they say, everything is bigger in Texas. With a seating capacity of over 150,000 in a 3,500 foot grandstand, Texas Motor Speedway is the second-largest sports facility in the United States and the third-largest in the world. Galvanized in 1996, Texas Motor Speedway is the home to hundreds of thousands of racing fans annually and remains corrosion-free today. The galvanizer collaborated closely with the fabricator to determine the most efficient and practical methods to achieve a coating that would last for decades. Their efforts produced a winning facility that was recognized as The Most Distinguished Project in the 1997 Excellence in Galvanizing Awards competition.
A major concern was determining the most efficient and economical coating for the 13 million pounds of steel.
As an outdoor facility, Texas Motor Speedway is subject to perpetual abuse from the elements 365 days per year. HDG provided the durability and resilience that would withstand the sweltering summers and damp, brisk winters that are characteristic of North Texas. Cathodic protection and the zinc-iron alloy layers that are provided by HDG far exceeded other forms of corrosion protection, most of which offer merely barrier protection. The fact that the zinc-iron alloys become harder and more scratch-resistant than the substrate steel proved to be an additional benefit of choosing HDG over other methods when considering the millions of spectators that have come in contact with the steel structure.
Much like any other outdoor sports facility, Texas Motor Speedway has endured sun exposure, highly-volatile temperatures and moisture. One element unique to racetracks, however, is the highly-acidic exhaust fumes emitted by the vehicles themselves which can lead to degradation of the coating as well as degradation of the substrate material. HDG was the clear choice to protect this $110 million investment due to the fact that it provides far more than just barrier protection. HDG has withstood the test of time for the last 22 years and will be sustainable for the next 70 years or more.
Considering the immense size of the structure, initial cost, as well as life-cycle cost, were a major concern in determining the most efficient and economical coating for the 13 million pounds of steel. An average coating thickness of 8.5 mils across the entire facility will provide an estimated 90 years of maintenance-free service, proving to be more economical than other coatings during that same lifespan.
Because of the enormous size of the facility, prompt delivery of materials was essential to meeting construction deadlines, and the completion date could not be subject to weather delays. With the material able to be handled just minutes after removal from the kettle, and the HDG process remaining independent of weather conditions, fabricators were able to meet scheduled deadlines without sacrificing the quality or performance of the coated steel.
ASTM A896-89 is the Standard Practice for conducting Case Studies on Galvanized Structures. The procedure was followed on selected stringers, rail risers, steps, cross beams and columns. A visual inspection was also performed on the entire stadium. The test indicated that 8.5 mils remain for continued corrosion protection.
Visual inspection revealed a somewhat rough or bumpy appearance on the heavy members indicating excessive growth of the alloy layer. This condition is attributable to the chemical composition of the steel. There was no indication of rust or staining.
The designers of Texas Motor Speedway were in search of a coating that would be not only corrosion-resistant and cost-efficient, aesthetically appealing and sustainable as well. Unlike other coatings, HDG evolves into a more uniform, subtle finish as time goes on. NASCAR teams display their respective colors proudly to be easily identified, as do their faithful followers. The designers sought to not distract from this aspect of the NASCAR experience by allowing the racers and fans to create the environment in a safe attractive facility, entertaining fans for generations.
It is a true testimonial that the owner has continued to use HDG for all projects that would follow TMS. The fabricator who still works closely with the owner, helped with the Case Study reports and HDG has met every need they had and more. The life-cycle cost had proven to be exactly what they expected (the first cost is the last cost), and the aesthetic look has weathered to provide race fans an experience they continue to patronize for every race. The case studies done in 2007 and in 2011 verify the structure has over 70 years of remaining life.
|Desc||Read. 1||Read. 2||Read. 3||Read. 4||Read. 5||Avg.|
|Section 434 stringer F 211||7.00||5.80||6.80||7.80||7.10||6.90|
|Section 445 Cross Support beam||7.30||6.80||7.80||6.00||7.10||7.00|
|Section 446 Stringer 292||8.40||10.40||10.10||10.50||10.10||9.90|
|Section 148 Stringer 306A||7.10||7.50||7.40||7.80||7.40||7.44|
|Section 148 Rail Riser||5.10||5.60||5.00||5.40||6.10||5.44|
Ft. Worth, TX United States
Coating Durability, Corrosion Performance, Life-Cycle Cost, Sustainability
All structural Steel such as stringers, beams and columns. All miscellaneous steel such as rail risers, steps hand rails and fixtures.
Southern Bleacher Company
Tom Sadler & Associates
Speedway Motor Sports
AZZ Galvanizing - Crowley
Thank you! Your vote has been accepted.