In 2016, Dixie Metal Products LLC of Memphis, Tennessee, worked on two of the largest entertainment projects in its region.

The first was the long-awaited transformation of the 32-story Pyramid Arena, a former basketball and entertainment facility in Memphis, into one of the largest Bass Pro Shops in the world. This project included a 220,000-square-foot retail space, six-lane bowling alley, a 32-story freestanding elevator to an observation platform and restaurant, an indoor archery and shooting range, and numerous other items to create an entertainment and retail destination. In addition, a three-story Big Cypress Lodge hotel surrounded the inside of the structure, with balconies overlooking the large indoor swamps and trees that incorporate the outdoor theme of Bass Pro Shops.   

Dixie Metal Products supplied the rectangular and spiral duct systems that maintain the massive indoor environment. Over 350,000 pounds of single- and double-wall ductwork was fabricated to be either concealed or exposed in a manner that blended with the structure, such as artificial coral applied to the outside of the exposed duct in the bowling alley — an area that was designed to simulate an underwater environment.   

The project was completed and opened in May 2015. Also in 2015, Dixie supplied the spiral single- and double-wall ductwork for the Pavilion, a multipurpose arena at the University of Mississippi in Oxford, Mississippi.

Spiral ductwork at Ole Miss Arena

The 230,000-square-foot structure includes a 9,600-seat arena for basketball, locker room suites, training facilities and club-level suites and seating. The largest portion of the ductwork on this project was the supply, return-air and smoke-evacuation system that was located 120 feet above the arena floor within the steel truss structure.    

Early in the project it was apparent installation options for hoisting and connecting the 48-inch double-wall supply duct sections would be limited. Working with the installing contractor, Knight & Wilson Inc. of Memphis, Tennessee, it was suggested that the Spiralmate flange system from Ductmate Industries Inc. be used, since this transverse connector included a flange closure band with a single tightening point.  

Dixie factory installed the mating flanges on the double-wall duct, and the installation was completed with the field-installed closure band high above the arena floor.  For vertical runs, Dixie also factory-welded angle rings to the outside of the double wall to allow the installation of threaded rods as necessary to support the large vertical ducts. 

This article originally appeared in the January 2016 issue of SNIPS. This article and its images were supplied by Dixie Metal Products.