Bank of America Stadium is home to the Carolina Panthers and North Carolina FC. Enclosure changes over the past decades and the lack of a previous smoke movement analysis resulted in smoke-protected seating provisions not being explicitly achieved for the Level 100 Main Concourse.
At the conclusion of assisting in a Life Safety Evaluation (LSE) for the stadium, it was determined that adequate smoke movement from the main concourse was never quantitatively justified. Working within a tight timeline to support upcoming sporting and concert events, Performance Based Fire’s role was to determine if tenable conditions are maintained and, if not, what corrective actions would be needed.
Various demanding fire scenarios were evaluated throughout the main concourse by leveraging computational fluid dynamics modeling through FDS. The results of this analysis demonstrated that adequate smoke movement occurred for tenability to be maintained, allowing the utilization of smoke-protected seating egress factors of specific importance in the lower bowl.
Bank of America Stadium was able to continue its operations for the upcoming sports and concert schedule, as this analysis met the timing and technical requirements of multi-jurisdictional AHJs. By verifying that smoke-protected seating provisions were maintained, the occupant loading, specifically at the field level during concerts, was able to remain significantly higher.
NFPA 101 Section, Life Safety Code, Section 12.4.1 (Life Safety Evaluation)
International Building Code (IBC), Section 1029.6.2 (Smoke Protected Assembly Seating)
International Building Code (IBC), Section 909 (Smoke Control Systems)