They say everything is bigger in Texas. So when it came time for Dallas to host the February 2010 National Basketball Association All-Star Game, officials knew they wanted to pull out all the stops and showcase what their city was truly made of.
The publicity that comes with such a large-scale project is considerable, but so is the risk. The project involved building wraps that included skyscrapers and two hotels. Given the tight timeframe, organizers knew that they needed to work with experienced professionals, and selected The National Print Group of Chattanooga, Tennessee. “We’re known as the ones who do the big projects,” said Doug Newson, President of National Print Group. “Dialogues started up. We were asked, ‘Would it be possible to get a team together to print and install and get it done?’ I said we could do it.”
Newson contacted Jodi Sawyer, a member of Spencer, MA-based FLEXcon’s Product Branding Business Team. She said that both National and FLEXcon were ready for the challenge. “Dallas always does things big,” Sawyer said, adding that this project was no exception. “It included the Bank of America Plaza, the Hyatt Hotel, and the Renaissance Hotel. These applications were tremendous in scope and size.” So tremendous, in fact, that the wrap on the Bank of America attracted the attention of the Guinness Book of World Records. The 53,000 square-foot graphic, which measured 105 feet by 505 feet, will be included in the next edition as the largest graphic ever installed on a building. Even that is only a fraction of the more than 120,000 square feet of total graphics that National produced for the event.
Full Court Press
The path to this super-sized success was not always an easy one. Although the design of the graphics and the selection of the buildings were relatively straightforward, there were other areas that were problematic. Specifically, Newson said that there were significant challenges in the area of permitting. Coordinating efforts with the Dallas Mayor’s office, National was able to shrink the permitting schedule and get the paperwork in place for the February 2010 event.
“It included the Bank of America Plaza, the Hyatt Hotel, and the Renaissance Hotel. These applications were tremendous in scope and size.”
FLEXcon’s Product Branding
Business Team Member
After getting authorization to move forward, organizers discovered that the project faced an unanticipated funding challenge. “In years past, they had a primary sponsor, but the economy was challenging, so the primary sponsor had backed out late in the game,” Newson said. The Dallas Mavericks decided to take the lead, putting together a funding mechanism with the NBA to make this spectacular graphic display happen. Newson said there were a lot of people committed to making sure this project was as spectacular as possible. “We opened a dialogue with the Dallas Mavericks and the NBA,” he said. “Mark Cuban, who owns the Mavericks, said, ‘If this is going to be in Dallas, it’s going to be bigger than anything anyone has ever done.’”
The Maverick’s organization and the NBA found funding, and the project got back on track. Design work was transferred to National, which utilized two HP Scietex XL 1500 printers that had been modified to meet the company’s particular printing needs. In addition, National employed specially formulated inks that had been developed to their strict specifications, as well as custom substrates developed in conjunction with FLEXcon. “They wanted to use a product they were comfortable with,” Sawyer said of National’s decision to use a custom version of FLEXcon® seeTHRU-sign®.