Saputo Stadium, Canada’s second largest soccer stadium and home of Major League Soccer’s Montreal Impact, has deployed an Aruba network to deliver new gameday experiences to fans and improve operations.
The Aruba network will be used to deliver reliable, high-performing Wi-Fi and new gameday experiences to fans, as well as to streamline and automate stadium operations.
Saputo Stadium is part of Montreal’s Olympic Park, originally built for the 1976 Summer Olympics.
With capacity for 19,000+ fans, the Stadium provides an unobstructed view of the iconic Montreal tower – the world’s tallest inclined tower – and sits on a 1.6 million square foot complex that includes administrative offices, a training field and player welfare areas.
Providing fans with in-stadium Wi-Fi, and all of the related experiences this can enable, was a key driver for the deployment, according to Saputo’s IT Director, Roger Miron. He said:
As we strive to provide our fans with the best experiences possible in our Stadium, we’ll continue to look for ways the network can help us and with Aruba, we’re confident that we can continue down this path.
Though the pandemic has caused us to have to delay the start of our home game play this year, engaging with fans and allowing them to share their experiences with each other and via social media is still one of the main hallmarks of the in-stadium experience. Implementing a reliable, high performing Wi-Fi network is the first step in our multi-phase initiative to enable extraordinary experiences, as well as improve our own stadium operations, and we’re excited to welcome our fans back to the stadium.
Working with partner, Vidéotron, a leader in Canadian telecommunications and founding sponsor and partner for the Montreal Impact, Saputo is deploying Aruba access points, mobility controllers and Aruba core and access switches, as well as AirWave for network management. Aruba’s turnkey solution that includes wireless, switching and management, was a key factor in Saputo’s decision to select Aruba, as was the ability to layer on additional Aruba technology solutions as the Stadium’s needs grow. Miron said:
We knew that Aruba had already been successfully deployed in many other stadiums and we saw early on that the Aruba infrastructure was easy to deploy.
In addition, the Aruba network offers the kind of scalability we need to handle the expected device density in our Stadium. We’ve engineered the network to accommodate two devices per attendee, and we’re confident the Aruba network can handle this load – or more – should we need to increase that.
Besides utilising the network for fan engagement, Saputo Stadium plans to modernise and improve concessions ordering and delivery, create more efficient order taking and delivery both in stadium suites and for Saputo’s retail vendors.
The stadium also plans to introduce mobile ticketing and build a mobile app to allow fans to discover and utilize all of the Stadium’s amenities.
To assist with these plans, Saputo is evaluating additional Aruba solutions such as Meridian location-based services and Aruba beacons for applications like in-seat concessions ordering, as well as analytics so that the Stadium can better understand and customize services based on its fans’ needs and preferences.