Birmingham CrossPlex: 750,000 Square Feet of Possibilities for the 2024 CrossFit Games
The 2024 CrossFit Games will take place in a new location as the season-ending event heads to Birmingham, AL. There are obvious questions about the late summer weather, but they should not be a concern based on the events possibly taking place inside a massive facility, the Birmingham CrossPlex.
(Editor’s note: Morning Chalk Up reached out multiple times to the Birmingham CrossPlex for comment. These requests via phone and email went unanswered)
The details: A city official with knowledge of the deal spoke to Morning Chalk Up and revealed that the CrossFit Games will head Birmingham, however this has yet to be confirmed by CrossFit HQ.
Of course, speculation is rampant and now everyone has their sights on the CrossPlex, a 750,000-square-foot, multi-purpose athletic and meeting facility as the most likely host venue, and with that in mind, here’s a breakdown of the world-class facility which is located just outside of the city’s downtown core.
- The Birmingham CrossPlex boasts several options for workout programmers. There is a 50-meter indoor Olympic swimming pool with 10 lanes, a six-lane oval hydraulic track, and an arena with 20,000 square feet of usable space.
- The Birmingham CrossPlex has hosted a variety of events, ranging from rodeos to concerts and trade shows. There have also been numerous sports events including two NCAA Division II Wrestling National Championships and hockey matches.
A hydraulic what? The hydraulic track is not something that is common. There are only seven in the United States and only 10 in the entire world, so the term is new to many people. The takeaway is that the track is adjustable.
- According to Granger Construction, the hydraulic track “ allows coaches and athletes to raise and lower the track surface at each end to specific angles of embankment, incorporating slope into the turns of the track.”
- “The slopes help counteract centrifugal force caused by an athlete’s circular motion, thus reducing the effort required to make tight corners and allowing runners to achieve better racing times.”
The people at work: The CrossPlex has numerous features for the athletes taking part, as well as the people working to cover the NOBULL CrossFit Games. For the athletes, there are numerous locker rooms with showers, warmup areas with room for hurdles, and stretching areas. There is even a theater-style meeting room with a capacity of 500 people, which will be handy for athlete announcements or press conferences.
- There are multiple options for the media members. The indoor track facility has a press box with 20 workstations, each with individual internet connections and monitors. This facility has a four-person broadcast box with room for camera equipment.
- Similarly, the Bill Harris Arena has a dedicated press box overlooking the competition floor for coverage of important events.
The infrastructure and fan experience: The ability to host a variety of events in an indoor facility is important, especially with an estimated 75% humidity at the time of the NOBULL CrossFit Games. Equally important is the infrastructure that improves the overall fan experience.
- First and foremost is parking. There are over 1,000 parking spots at the facility, as well as 26 handicap parking spaces. There are also turnaround/dropoff spots for buses and vans located at the rear and the front of the facility.
- The Birmingham CrossPlex also has ample space in the concourse for merchandise sales, which will scratch that itch of the CrossFit community. They can buy the latest products from numerous companies without heading out into the heat and humidity.
Seating is another important factor for the NOBULL CrossFit Games. The Bill Harris Arena, which would compare to Madison’s coliseum, can seat 5,000 fans while the Natatorium can seat 1,000. There is also space for 400 coaches and athletes on the swim deck. The indoor track venue can hold 4,000 fans in the bleachers and many others in the seven VIP suites.