Since opening in 1939, Gulfstream Park, which is owned by the Stronach Group, has served as one of the most important venues for thoroughbred racing in the US. Among other world-renowned races, Gulfstream hosts The Florida Derby, The Donn Handicap, Sunshine Millions Series and The Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap. In the summer of 2013 Gulfstream Park received over 4,000 stall applications for its upcoming Winter Racing Season. With about 2,000 existing stalls on its property, Gulfstream called on ClearSpan to manufacture and install 100,000 square feet of additional thoroughbred stall space.
At first, facility management at Gulfstream was nervous about completing the two 83′ wide by 600′ long structures within two months, but their nerves were quickly calmed when ClearSpan delivered and completed the installation of both structures within six weeks. The completion of the new stall barns allowed Gulfstream to house hundreds of additional horses on its property for the 2013-2014 racing season.
While the structure looks great within the picturesque landscape of South Florida’s Premier Thoroughbred Racing Facility, ClearSpan’s benefits, which include natural lighting and ventilation, are what management really appreciates, and the feedback from racehorse owners has been overwhelmingly positive. “Owners love having their horses in these comfortable, natural structures,” commented Dannean Malave, director of facilities for Gulfstream Park.
The structure was easy to install, and ClearSpan was able to work around existing structures, leaving no damage to the property. Using ClearSpan Helical Anchors as the structure’s foundation, site preparation expenses were minimized and construction was quickly underway. ClearSpan stall barns at Gulfstream were constructed with 12′ side openings, allowing the refreshing sea-breeze to cool the horses on hot days, and to promote additional comfort for the horses, HVLS fans were subsequently installed.
In the fall of 2014 Gulfstream was granted the privilege of hosting the world-renowned Fasig-Tipton Thoroughbred Auction. With less than six months to prepare for this event, Gulfstream called upon ClearSpan again to provide a new 85′ wide by 528′ long structure. “ClearSpan personnel were first-class throughout the process, from salespeople, to project managers, to construction crews” said Malave. “We did not even consider another provider, given our positive experience with ClearSpan.”
In addition to working on a second Gulfstream Park project, ClearSpan has also been selected to install new structures at Laurel Park, a property also owned by the Stronach Group, in 2015. “It’s an amazing building and we are glad we chose ClearSpan for our needs” said Malave.