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$200M MN Soccer Stadium Hits Halfway Mark

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

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Despite the Minnesota weather, crews at M.A. Mortenson Construction (Minneapolis) recently confirmed that the $200 million Allianz Field project in St. Paul is still on schedule and on budget, having just reached the halfway mark late last month.

The Project

In a construction update, Major League Soccer’s Minnesota United FC Loons announced that the cranes are gone and that the vast majority of the structural components of the new stadium are in place.

Minnesota United

Despite the Minnesota weather, crews at M.A. Mortenson Construction (Minneapolis) recently confirmed that the $200 million Allianz Field project in St. Paul is still on schedule and on budget, having just reach the halfway mark late last month.

The last of the structural steel—support for the canopy—is slated to finish up this month, in addition to the tubes that will surround the perimeter as support for the PTFE screen, which officials call a “first in the world.”

“It’s never been fabricated, actually,” said project manager Greg Huber, during a media tour of the project last week. “This is the first time this material has been used [for a construction project].”

The fabric exterior is made of a mesh of glass fiber and laminated in PTFE. The goal was for the canopy to keep out the elements, but also allow natural light and respond to other lighting as well. Officials also note the acoustic role that the shell plays, saying that it will basically corral the sound in the stadium while keeping much of the noise from the adjacent busy highways out.

“It was a key design element for fan comfort, so it will wrap all the way around the stadium,” Huber said. “It can also be illuminated and is also architecturally super interesting and will really be a unique stadium in the world."

The first panel of the PTFE is slated to be installed next week, and while there’s some excitement about the cutting-edge design, a lot will go into the ground below in preparation for the overhead coverage.

Huber explained that, because much of the field will be in the Minnesota shade for a good portion of the year, stadium crews will be using an artificial grow light for the grass. Miles of draining and heating pipes will also be installed under the field, which is slated to take place in the next phase of construction.

In addition to completing the canopy, LED and scoreboard installation is also set to begin within the month, and worker numbers are expected to increase to about 250 daily (though it will eventually reach 325).

The Stadium

The structure is slated to hold 19,400 people and will include a standing-room-only section (fitting 2,800), which was part of a design that wanted “a feeling of closeness,” coming from owner UnitedHealth CEO Bill McGuire.

“The thing that is really phenomenal for those who have been looking at [the construction] is how the stadium truly does reflect the design,” McGuire said during the same media tour.

The spectator space will slope at 34 degrees, which officials say is one of the steepest slopes in the world.

Many of the seats will be fitted on rails, which will allow for crews to adjust spacing as needed, as well as switch out the actual seats.

The bulk of construction is slated to be completed in February 2019, with the home opener scheduled for mid-April.

   

Tagged categories: Building envelope; Commercial Construction; Construction; Stadiums/Sports Facilities; Structural steel

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