Hamburg Messe und Congress (HMC): Turning exh...
Hamburg Messe und Congress (HMC)

Turning exhibition halls into an arena

Photo: HMC

Hamburg's exhibition campus is offering a new feature: A mobile grandstand system, providing flexibility for tailoring event formats to individual needs. Taken together, the grandstands provide seats for an audience of 4,332.

The new system increases the range of options that Hamburg Messe und Congress (HMC) can offer at its facilities. "I am enthusiastic about this system and looking forward to our customers' creative ideas for using it in their events. At the same time, these new grandstands allow us to make an additional, attractive offer that opens up new possibilities to use our halls, which are already quite flexible," said Bernd Aufderheide, president and CEO of HMC.
„These grandstands open up new possibilities to use our halls.“
Bernd Aufderheide, president and CEO, HMC
A total of twelve 361-seat units, each weighing 26 metric tons, are now available. Major benefits of the system include space-saving storage and much faster set-up times than scaffold-type grandstands. With steel frames as load-bearing structures, these units feature wood and linoleum flooring as well as upholstered seats, which are retractable and can be stowed along the walls of an exhibition hall without taking up much space or interfering with exhibition operations. Setting up or stowing the units takes about one day. Erecting a scaffold-type grandstand of the same size would take five days and dismantling it three-and-a-half days. HMC is currently training six of its own team members and about the same number of employees from an external partner company in handling the system.

The decision to invest 3.8m euros in the grandstand system was based on extensive market research during the years 2019 and 2020, HMC explains. In parallel, local prerequisites such as floor loads, hall door dimensions and moving walkways on the Hamburg exhibition campus were analysed to make sure that all requirements were met before a call for bids was issued throughout Europe in September 2021. The components were manufactured at a factory in Slovenia between February and June 2022 and delivered in 52 truckloads for a two-month final assembly at the Hamburg site.