I heard there was a new machine gun range going in on Industrial Blvd. directly behind Circus Circus so I decided to drive over and see what was going on. While I was approaching the area I was thinking to myself “How am I going to know which building this range is being built in?” A couple blocks later I noticed multiple Army type vehicles, an old military helicopter, and a pretty sizable lot which clearly had some construction going on. To be honest, the place is pretty hard to miss. I pulled into the parking lot and asked the first guy I saw if I had the right place. While he was trying to decide if he should tell me anything, one of the owners pulled in right behind me and offered to take me on a walk through tour of the facility.
A couple of weeks later I got an email inviting me to stop by the site and meet with a couple of the people involved in this new venture. For the next 2 hours, I got an in depth look at the vision that is to be Battlefield: Vegas. Another machine gun range? Of course it is. But there are several things which will set this one apart from the rest. First off, location, location, location. When I say directly behind Circus Circus, that’s exactly what I mean. In fact, if you head West of the Strip on Circus Circus Dr. the road will take you into the parking lot of BFV. How convenient is that for the visiting tourists? This new 3.25 acre fun park will also feature an airsoft field where you can battle it out with your friends or go head to head with a group of seasoned Veterans. The entire facility will be a museum of sorts showcasing military memorabilia and displays that will change on a regular basis. The facility will also be home to a retail gun shop, snack shack, two VIP rooms, and a conference room for those wanting a very different venue for corporate meetings and events.
The previously mentioned vehicles will all be dedicated to fallen friends. Some of them will be used for displays while others will caravan up and down the famous Las Vegas Strip picking up patrons along the way. The insides of a few of the trucks have been removed to make way for comfy seating, LCD televisions, and air conditioners so you can play your favorite first person shooter games in comfort while on your way to the range. There has even been some discussion of raising the helicopter into the air and using it as a zip-line platform.
As if they don’t have enough on their plate, after construction had started, an opportunity to take over the adjacent 2.25 acre property presented itself. This acquisition will increase the site to 5.5 acres. The current plan is to finish developing the initial project then move immediately into transforming the new property into additional museum space and a 100 yard indoor range for….Are you ready for this? A MINIGUN! Yep, 6000 rounds per minute of pure adrenaline rush and pumping lead down range! Bring your wallet for this bad boy.
For the last 2.5 months, I’ve stopped by the construction site every couple of days in order to keep up with the progress. So far, the majority of the work that has been done is on the range itself. The building was previously a heavy equipment rental business with garage bays, this is the area the range will go in. To retrofit the range, the back of the garage had to be extended to get the 75 foot long shooting lanes they wanted. The asphalt behind the garage was dug up and a new concrete floor was poured for the entire length of the range extending from inside the garage to about 50 feet behind the existing building. The additional space brings the primary building up to 14,200sf.
The front garage doors were walled off with #5 rebar and grout filled masonry block. The same materials were used to construct the new walls for the back half of the range. This is a time consuming process not only due to the labor involved but also because of inspections that are needed for such a build. The building code says that you can only build about 5 feet up then you have to call for an inspection to make sure that the rebar is in place and all is well before the crew can fill the block with grout and then move on to the next 5 foot section. When you watch the video below, there is a 3 second time lapse portion showing the last part of the back wall going up. In real-time, this process took a little over an hour and a half.
Battlefield: Vegas has chosen to go with Shooting Ranges International (SRI) for their bullet traps and range construction. The traps and steel baffles arrived after construction had already began on the new walls. The new materials had to be lifted over the first 10 feet and set in the middle of the construction site where they will now have to shuffle the pallets of steel back and forth while completing the build out. The back wall of the garage had a couple of doors plus a load bearing wall which had to be removed with a little encouragement from a couple of jackhammers. The huge steel beam in the photos was lifted and bolted into place to support the roof now that the wall has been removed.
The most recent additions to the build are roof trusses, fire sprinkler system, and HVAC which are all currently being installed. Elsewhere in the building, vaults have been built to secure the computer/surveillance room and armory. The frames for many walls have gone up, restrooms are being built, CCTV, electrical, and plumbing are almost complete. We will discuss all this and more in the next installment.
Battlefield: Vegas is aiming to open their doors this July. Future plans are to franchise the business to other destination cities throughout the U.S.