A Piece of American Soccer History

Soccer's legacy in the United States continues in Columbus, OH

Soccer continues to be the number one most-watched sport in the world and the fourth most-watched in the United States. As the FIFA World Cup roars on during the November and December months of 2022, we all recognize the success of the United States men’s team in making it to the World Cup and the role of soccer in American culture and beyond. KLIK USA recently had the opportunity to add to the history of soccer in the United States with the lighting of the Olentangy River Arena District Bridge. 

The Olentangy Trail runs from Worthington, Ohio into downtown Columbus and the Ohio State University. The 17.5 miles of paved walkways follow its namesake, the Olentangy River, for the duration of the way. In 2020, a new bridge was installed from the trail to the new site of the Stadium. The Stadium was built to replace the Historic Crew Stadium, a soccer stadium rich with history and a staple of the Columbus area. Now, stadium will hold the games of the Columbus Crew, members of the MLS. 

The Historic Crew Stadium proves ever important to the soccer legacy as it was the first soccer-specific stadium in the United States, opening in 1999. The stadium took a mere 274 days to build and quickly, a pinnacle of success for both United States soccer and soccer around the world. Notably, it held the Women’s FIFA World Cup in 2003, one of six venues in the United States to hold a game. The United States Women’s National Team beat North Korea in a shootout that put the US at 3-0. Further, it was used by the Columbus Crew in conjunction with events as their stadium until 2021 when construction of Stadium was complete, making both Historic Crew Stadium and Stadium the only stadiums in the MLS with the sole purpose of soccer play. Now, the Historic Crew Stadium will serve as a multi-purpose sports complex and concert venue where the Columbus Crew can practice, and the city of Columbus can hold events. 

The decision to build the Stadium came as the city wanted the arena closer to downtown Columbus with greater accessibility for fans and the neighborhood alike. It was made in a location alongside the Olentangy River Trail as the trail holds many other historic stadiums in its path with on-foot and bicycle access to The Ohio State Stadium as well. It also allows for greater enjoyment of the space as fans can come to see the stadium with ease. Currently, the stadium can hold a capacity of 20,000 people and sits in the vibrant Arena District. KLIK USA is excited to be a part of their goals with the usage of the XL28 as LED guardrail lights. The bridge way lighting design allows pedestrians to feel comfortable crossing the bridge at any time of day or night with installation into the guardrail itself.  

Designer: HLB New York

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