Dick’s House of Sport: Building the Future of Experiential Retail

Dick’s House of Sport
Victor, New York

When national retailer Dick’s Sporting Goods mapped out the future of retail, they developed a concept based around the guest experience – a place where visitors can not only see and purchase goods, but actually touch them and test them, with sporting experts nearby to help elevate the experience and answer any questions. This concept became Dick’s House of Sport.

And when Dick’s was ready to make this concept a reality, they turned to long-time partner WDS Construction to make it happen.

The result is the prototype Dick’s House of Sport, located in suburban Rochester, New York. The new location is far more than just a store, it is the realization of a vision to create a community-centric destination for sporting enthusiasts, professionals, and families. With more than 850 stores across the United States, this was the first of its kind.

At its core, the project is the repurposing of a former Sears Department Store into something that goes far beyond the 20th century retailing that previously occupied the location. Constructed during the global pandemic and a mandatory 55-day COVID-19 shut down, WDS Construction was faced with many challenges, including a significant workforce shortage with subcontractors. Furthermore, project scheduling was impacted by regulatory agency availability for approvals and site visits.

Additionally, because this was the first of its kind, executives from Dick’s Sporting Goods regularly visited the site during construction, making revisions and necessitating high levels of agility within the construction team. Even after the project was technically “completed,” additional changes were being made to perfect the new experiential retail concept prior to opening.

The result is a 103,000 sq. ft. destination like no other. Among the typically retail amenities expected by consumers, the House of Sport includes:

  • 17,000 sq. ft. outdoor field and running track, which doubles as a multi-use space, hosting movies in the summer and a skating rink in the winter
  • Indoor batting cage
  • Three virtual golf bays, allowing guests to golf virtually around the world due to advanced technology integration, as well as a putting green
  • 32-foot-high rock-climbing wall
  • The largest physical collection of shoes companywide
  • Wellness services like yoga

 

When coupled with a staff of athletes and experts providing tips to visitors, the experience adds up to something unique in the marketplace. In fact, average weekly visits to this House of Sport exceeded those of three nearby Dick’s Sporting Goods by more than 93%. This project was recognized with a Gold Award from ABC Wisconsin in the 2021 Project of Distinction.

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