Chelsea Piers Connecticut

Chelsea Piers Connecticut is a 400,000-square-foot sports, entertainment and educational facility. The project repurposed the existing old Clairol factory building, which was set to be demolished.



  • Stamford, Connecticut, USA


  • Chelsea Piers

Project Status

  • Completed

Creating Column-Free Spaces

Rehabilitating the factory into a sports complex required an economic solution to remove 23 existing columns in order to achieve 100-foot column-free zones. Leaving the entire roof structure in place, the WSP USA team devised a plan to construct king post trusses out of the in-place existing structure, allowing the columns to be cut away.

Leaving the existing beams, which formed the top compression chords of the truss, in place and using a portion of the existing columns as the king posts, only a relatively small amount of steel had to be added to form the tension cords of the truss. Upgrading of the in-place top chord members was accomplished via composite action with the new concrete slab poured on the existing in-place metal roof deck. Steel angle members were used for the tension chords of the trusses. Although the “off the shelf” structural members remain exposed, they are aesthetically pleasing. Economic and sustainable, the engineering achieved an excellent example of “form following function”.