As architects we often spend a great deal of energy on projects that at the moment feel like the most important work we’ve ever done. We forget that although we have influence over design we have no control over political will, the economy, and most of all territorial rights and approvals. That being said, some of our best work gets locked away in the vault or collects dust on a shelf somewhere in the office.
Pendulum designed this ballpark with intensions for placement on the Expo 67 Island in Montreal Quebec Canada. At the time it felt like the one opportunity we’d have in a long time to aggressively stretch our design thinking – after all, the ballpark is surrounded by architectural icons.
Unfortunately the project came to a screeching halt. Ten years after the fact our CEO, Jonathan O’Neil Cole said he dreamt he attended an event at the facility….then he woke up with notes on required design adjustments…so that’s what we did.
We never stop thinking about how to make our projects better…As Jonathan always says: “Design Is Change”.
One of the most fulfilling aspects of architectural practice is witnessing vision progress toward reality. Pendulum’s CEO Jonathan O’Neil Cole spent time on site this week reviewing construction progress with City of Gastonia staff. The project is currently on a trajectory for an on time completion January 2021.
The project experienced an additional boost with Brandon Bellamy, owner of the Velocity Companies announced as approved owner of the Gastonia, NC Atlantic League franchise.
Click Brandon’s name above for a link to the Baseball America official press release.
As sports across the globe are beginning to return, organizations at all levels of play are actively contemplating the right approach with an obvious default to caution. Pendulum’s Jonathan Cole is quoted in a recent article written by Joe Mock in USA Today Sports Weekly on the topic of seating bowls during the COVID era. Also quoted is Nick Sunderhaus, a national security expert and collaborator in Pendulum’s Part-Two release of “Public Assembly Post COVID19” .
As we continue our conversations with owners, operators, athletes, and fans, it is clear that there are still many unanswered questions, but we are seeing movement in the sports marketplace. NASCAR was the first sport in the USA to host fans at a large scale (30,000) and now we see college wood bat leagues including the Coastal Plain League and United Shores Professional Baseball League following suit in states that will allow it with up to 1,300 fans in attendance.
Part-Three of our five part series will address how the market is responding to change. Is design the answer? Stay tuned…
The Grill Nation Show featuring Jason Grill and Jonathan Cole will air on Saturday July 11, 2020 on KMBZ 980AM and on iTunes. In this clip Cole answers the question “what is your favorite stadium (that you didn’t work on) and why?” It is just a sneak peek of the full conversation that goes into detail about Pendulum’s history, inspirations, emotional muscle memory, and design methodology.
Be sure to tune in on Saturday…this will be a lot of fun!
As founding principal, Jonathan O’Neil Cole has served as managing member and 51% owner of Pendulum, a Kansas City-based architecture firm, since its launch in 2007.As of July 1, 2020 Cole has acquired the remaining 49% balance of company shares and shall continue serving in his role as practice leader and CEO.
“I am honored to be in the position to continue to lead Pendulum in the direction of growth and innovation.While this acquisition is more of a formality, I do believe it will provide a great deal of clarity for our employees, collaborators, and past, present, and future clients.While there are very few things I’d change about our history, we’ve certainly got an extremely bright future ahead of us,” Cole said.
Founded in 2007 in Kansas City, Missouri, Pendulum has gained notoriety in the sports architecture marketplace with the design of thirteen built sports facilities and counting. Of recent note Pendulum teamed with Florida based Fawley Bryant Architecture to complete the design of Cool Today Park, spring training home of the Atlanta Braves. The completion of Cool Today Park in March of 2019 was quickly followed by the two firms being selected to design the renovation of Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium, spring training home of the Miami Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals.In addition to sports architecture Pendulum has developed a reputation for the design of unique Kansas City, Missouri commercial buildings including The Guild, RW/2 Studios, and Crosstown Substation.
About Jonathan O’Neil Cole, AIA, NCARB, NOMA
1990 – 1995 California Polytechnic University Pomona, Bachelor of Architecture
1995 HNTB Corporation – Irvine, CA – Design Staff Member
2001 HOK Sport S+V+E – Associate Staff Member
2006 360 Architecture – Architect/Market Leader
2007 Pendulum – Principal
2020 Rethinking The Future Awards – Future Stadia
2019 CSI Award, Innovative Design + Function – Wyco Vintage Broadway Kansas City, Missouri
2019 CSI Award, Visionary Design – Cool Today Park North Port, Florida
2018 CSI Award, Community Investment – The Corner Ballpark Detroit, Michigan
2018 CSI Award, Excellence in Craftsmanship – Dunkin’ Donuts Park Hartford, Connecticut
2018 Hartford Magazine Best Sports Venue – Dunkin’ Donuts Park Hartford, Connecticut
2018 Kansas City Business Journal Coolest Office Award – Pendulum Headquarters Kansas City, Missouri
2017 Ballpark Digest Best Ballpark Award – Dunkin’ Donuts Park Hartford, CT
2017 Baseballparks.com Ballpark of the Year – Dunkin’ Donuts Park Hartford, CT
2017 ACEC Michigan Engineering Eminent Connector Award – Jimmy John’s Field Utica, Michigan
2017 Phoenix Community Impact Award Excellence in Brownfield Redevelopment – Jimmy John’s Field Utica, Michigan
2017 IIDA Mid America Design Silver Award for Renovation & Restoration – Pendulum Headquarters Kansas City, Missouri
2017 NOMA Honor Award, Built Category – Dunkin’ Donuts Park Hartford, Connecticut
2016 Ballpark Digest Best Renovation – AutoZone Park Memphis, Tennessee
2014 EDC Cornerstone Award – Crosstown Substation Kansas City, Missouri
2013 NOMA Design Excellence Citation – RW/2 Studio & The Guild Kansas City, Missouri
2013 EDC Cornerstone Award for Residential Building – East Village Apartments Kansas City, Missouri
As we progress closer to the completion of the Fuse District Sports Complex scheduled to open in 2021, Our CEO pauses for a moment to look forward. We applaud the City of Gastonia, NC for their ability to “see the finish line before the race ever started.”
Thank you for your willingness to trust the process and collaborate with us on your personal version of the “Small Big Idea.”
May 18, 2020 was the 13th anniversary of the launch of Pendulum. Under normal circumstances we’d be gearing up for an amazing party with friends and close collaborators but these aren’t normal times with COVID-19 forcing the globe to proceed with caution.
Even though we can’t gather together in one place, our CEO Jonathan O’Neil Cole shared a few words about what this year means to him.
Many thanks to our staff, clients, close collaborators for fueling our ability to keep swinging.
Pendulum is pleased to announce a new website feature now live in our portfolio. We are kicking things of with the multi-award wining Dunkin’ Donuts Park, home of the Hartford Yard Goats.
Visitors are welcome to drag their mouse or finger across their computer screen or smart device and rotate the digital model in a walking tour of the ballpark. There are hot spots that can be clicked to launch enraged images and brief descriptions of featured areas.
Jonathan Cole, founding principal of Kansas City, MO based Pendulum stated “virtual reality and 3D visualization is an important part of our daily process from the very beginning stages of design. We communicate the sometimes crazy ideas rolling around in our head in real time and in a human scale which in my mind is a great advantage over the historic use of scaled physical models. Our clients no longer have to interpret our drawings because we are placing them in our models at every meeting, it’s an environment that feels very real. This new web feature also allows us to engage the public/fan and experience the ballpark before they arrive at a game…they’ll know what to expect; we think that’s powerful.”
Click the rotating image above to launch our new interactive feature. Stay tuned for upcoming announcements, more ballparks will be added.