GEODIS Park

Nashville, Tennessee, United States

Challenge. Nearly two years after their inaugural match, Nashville SC took the pitch in their new home at GEODIS Park — the largest soccer-specific stadium in the U.S. and Canada, boasting 30,000 seats.

The stadium is nestled in the storied fairgrounds of the Wedgewood-Houston neighborhood, a buzzing art hub dawned with revitalized historic factories. As architect of record, Populous collaborated with Nashville-based HASTINGS Architecture to design an MLS stadium that authentically reflected the Nashville community and offered year-round activation opportunities.

Innovation. GEODIS Park fosters an electric and intimate match day experience for fans, with tight sightlines just 150 feet between the last row of seats and the pitch touchline, bringing fans closer to the action than ever before. The standing supporters’ section is angled specifically for incredible sightlines and an intimidating game day atmosphere.

I think this is going to be a hard place for people to come and play and beat us. That’s the whole point.

John Ingram, Nashville SC owner

The stadium features a variety of seating options, including three distinct club experiences. The Valkyrie Premier Club offers a luxury experience with high-quality finishes and sleek design. The GEODIS WeHo Club reflects the signature Nashville music-centric theme, and the Lo Siento Goal Post Club provides a classic sports bar feel.

The composition of materials utilized throughout the stadium reflects the juxtaposition between the neighborhood’s now creative, residential community and its former manufacturing facilities. A 360-degree high exposed structural steel canopy and the brick-clad ground level structures honor the industrial aesthetic. This canopy also protects the open-air stadium, allowing the venue to be activated year-round for a variety of events.

The design reflects Nashville SC’s unique history and gives space for new traditions to be made. Colorful banners featuring the faces of players and fans adorn the stadium’s exterior columns. The stadium even features a stage in the seating bowl that houses a Nashville SC branded Gibson Les Paul guitar used for the pregame riff.

  • GEODIS Park boasts incredible sightlines, bringing fans closer to the action than ever before and creating an electric, intimidating game day atmosphere.
  • The WeHo Club’s honkey-tonk feel reflects the signature Nashville music-centric culture.
  • The stadium features a stage in the seating bowl that houses a Nashville SC branded Gibson Les Paul guitar used for the pregame riff.

GEODIS Park keeps Nashville’s notable music scene at its core, with its flexibility to accommodate 27,000 people for concerts. The back-of-house — including a flex room for stage crew, auxiliary locker rooms, a concert power room and a loading dock with a truck tunnel that runs directly to the field — creates a seamless experience for event operators, performers and artists. The stadium also integrates multiple mini stages where spectators are welcomed by local artists and songwriters.

Impact. GEODIS Park is a state-of-the-art stadium that flawlessly highlights the rich history of the Wedgewood-Houston neighborhood in juxtaposition with its creative and residential aesthetic. The stadium energizes the Nashville SC fan base and greater community with the flexibility to host game day matches, concerts, community events and more year-round. Since opening, the stadium has served as a catalyst for continued development and community involvement.

Services Provided
Architecture

Populous designed a stadium that is uniquely Nashville, located west of the Fairgrounds Speedway on the highest part of the grounds. The design of the stadium draws inspiration from the rich history of the Wedgewood-Houston neighborhood and focuses on flexibility, functionality and the ability to provide a quality experience. The expansive concourse within the stadium houses diverse local concession options and an upscaled aesthetic. This concourse space also allows fans to keep their eye on the game while mingling with one another. The restrooms are tucked away behind the concessions to streamline access to food, beverage and merchandise.

Interior Design

Populous designed the interiors of the stadium to compliment the exterior aesthetic. There are a variety of premium spaces built for every level of fan that are designed to seamlessly transition from a sporting event to entertainment, with a focus on high design and limited team branding. Wood was utilized throughout the suites and clubs to provide warmth while honoring the industrial aesthetic and maintaining Nashville’s nightlife atmosphere.

The Valkyrie Premier Club features luxury finishes including porcelain tile, walnut hardwood and quartz countertops. The GEODIS WeHo Club offers a honkey-tonk feel while the Lo Siento Goal Post Club offers a classic yet polished sports bar feel, adorned with large TVs and interactive LED colored lighting. The detailed interiors honor the Nashville fan base, featuring the lyrics of the supporters’ song written by the Nashville-based alternative rock band, Judah and The Lion’s, on the bamboo ceiling of the Supporters Section gate entrance on the concourse.

Brand Activation

Populous brought Nashville SC’s distinct brand to life through an energetic yet welcoming atmosphere. The illuminated sculptural team logo suspended at the northeast gate of GEODIS Park is a beacon that can be seen as spectators approach the stadium. Team branding is applied directly to brick and wood surfaces, while typography across the stadium references the textural quality of the Hatch Show Print’s letterpress band posters.

Populous also worked to reference Nashville’s musical heritage, speaking to current team traditions and fostering new ones. Featured in the Geodis WeHo club is a neon guitar, inspired by Broadway’s honky-tonks and the iconic guitar utilized for the pregame riff.

Wayfinding

Populous worked to create wayfinding assets that are cohesive and fit in seamlessly with the overall aesthetic of the stadium. Black steel finishes and graphic accents printed directly on metallic matte surfaces emphasize the industrial feel of the stadium. The use of brick and wood bring warmth and hospitality to the stadium.

Facts and Figures
Soccer Capacity
30,100
Concert Capacity
26,870
Gross Square footage
544,000
Outdoor plaza square footage
35,000
Project Team
Connect with the designers

Bruce Beahm

Nicole Smolenski

Mike Donovan

Francisco Besa

Mitchell Brown

Whitney Loree

Justin Cox

Bruce Miller