The US Open in New York not only means top notch tennis, but it also means the unveiling of new tennis and sports technology. That will again be the case at the 2015 US Open, where the main draw of the tournament begins on Monday, August 31 and concludes on Sunday, September 13. The qualifying draws commence on Tuesday, August 25, all at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows.
New this year is a roof. Big deal you say, but yes, this is a big deal. 6,000 tons of steel circle Arthur Ashe Stadium as the final touches are put on a retractable roof that will become operational for the 2016 tournament. This will be the largest roof on any tennis stadium in the world and it will produce a 2,500 square foot opening. A chilled water ventilation system will come with the roof to control humidity inside the stadium when the roof is closed. The USTA is very bullish on this new roof and with rain always in the forecast for the US Open, it’s a welcome addition.
Along with the roof, other new enhancements to the stadium are also going to debut in 2015. Upgrades to lights, sound systems and video boards will benefit tennis fans. Four big screen video boards will now be scattered throughout the stadium.
A new grandstand court that will be ready for 2016 is also exciting. It will seat 8,000 fans and house a food court. Officials say this new stadium will be great for viewing and pick up where the last grandstand court left off when it came to exciting tennis.
A new practice gallery will allow up to 3,000 fans to watch the practice sessions of the best tennis players in the world. A nightly light show that will take place between the two evening matches is a nice touch as it will also feature a performance of “America the Beautiful” by the USTA’s Casting Call winners.
Tennis fans watching on their HDTVs at home will also notice some changes. ESPN is now the exclusive live domestic partner of the US Open. ESPN will show play from 11 courts and over 130 hours of live play will be shown on ESPN platforms, ESPN and ESPN2. More that 1,100 hours of tennis will be featured on ESPN3. New camera setups and new camera angles will be tried by ESPN crews and that again means the popular high tech Spider-Cam and the “rail cam” will also return to give viewers at some some incredible tennis coverage.
The 2015 US Open promises to be exciting on and off the court. With all this new technology in place, tennis fans will have the ultimate fan experience when it comes to tennis. It’s the perfect match.