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The News Website for Glendale High School


The News Website for Glendale High School


Spherical Struggles in Sin City

The newest venue in Las Vegas is an eyesore
Nigel Hoult

Is the Sphere a colossal wonder or an extravagant mistake?

The Sphere in Paradise, Nevada, advertised as the world’s largest spherical structure, is covered in 1.2 million LED panels, and a massive 16k high-resolution LED screen. It covers 16,000 square feet and offers more than 18,000 seats on the inside. The Sphere stands tall, at 366 feet high, and 517 feet wide, easily bringing attention to itself from both near and far. 

Designed by Populous, the construction of the Sphere began in 2019, and because of its staggering $2.3 billion price tag (exceeding the initial estimates of $1.2 billion), it is the most expensive venue ever built in Las Vegas. The Sphere officially opened on September 29, 2023, welcoming audiences from all over the world with its promise of unforgettable concerts, shows, and entertainment experiences.

As impressive and enormous as the Sphere looks from far away, the closer you get to it, the initial awe begins to fade, revealing a more disappointing appearance. There are millions of individual LED lights spread out across the Sphere, and while it is impressive from a distance, the structure stops looking like a screen and starts to look disjointed and lackluster up-close, which takes away from its overall magnificence. 

Externally, the Sphere serves as a towering billboard, plastered with advertisements that detract from its aesthetic appeal. It ends up resembling more of a commercial structure, rather than an entertaining landmark.

Operating and maintaining such a colossal venue also comes at an excessively high cost, with losses nearing $100 million within its first three months of operation.

Moreover, the environmental toll of its energy consumption has raised concerns about sustainability and the amount of light pollution it produces every night.

On the inside, safety hazards are unavoidable, with steep seating arrangements posing a risk of injury to the attendees. With over 18,000 seats packed into its enormous interior, the venue’s design requires steep steps to accommodate its capacity. Although the layout maximizes occupancy, it also increases the risk of accidents, as people navigate the steep inclines and crowded rows. 

Las Vegas is a pretty fitting place for the Sphere. It is over-the-top, huge and solely there to bring in tourists and more visitors, mirroring the aesthetic of Las Vegas. Nevertheless, this venue is a missed opportunity for innovation and sustainability. 

The Sphere could have been something more than just a venue with an unusual exterior. It could have expanded from the idea of traditional big concerts or shows into something that would allow a more interactive and immersive experience for the audience. However, it’s just a big eyesore.

About the Contributor
Elina Arutunian
Elina Arutunian, Staff Writer
Elina is a junior at Glendale High School. She is a member of both the journalism and yearbook programs. She enjoys watching different TV shows and movies, as well as hanging out with her friends and siblings. In her free time, she also loves listening to music and taking walks.
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